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It’s official; the fires have merged — so what are we going to call it?

The plan to contain and eventually extinguish the Bear and Claremont fires is progressing and the two fires have merged as of today. The Forest Service is referring to the merger, along with other fires on the Plumas National Forest, as the North Complex. No longer are the acreage and percentage of containment broken down separately in the daily operational reports; all information is combined.

The North Complex is 37,261 acres and 42 percent contained. There are 1,260 personnel working the complex, including 60 Canadian firefighters who are currently mopping up Indian Valley’s Copper and Iron fires, but will be assigned to what was the Claremont and Bear.

Social media is wrestling with this turn of events. The North Complex doesn’t seem like a satisfactory name, and individuals have suggested Clarbear, Clarebear and Bearmont. Plumas News favors Clarebear, but that won’t be reflected in any Forest Service reporting. It will officially be the North Complex.

The Claremont Fire broke out Aug. 17 as the result of a lightning strike. It has forced evacuations and threatened the communities of East Quincy, La Porte Road, the Highway 70 corridor, Spring Garden, Greenhorn, Cromberg and Sloat during the past weeks. But as of 2 p.m. today, all evacuation advisories have been lifted. Only one outbuilding has been lost during the fire.

The Bear Fire also broke out Aug. 17 following a lightning strike. Initially it was left to burn because it wasn’t immediately a threat to people or property; it was in steep, rugged terrain; and resources were scarce due to the fire burning across the state. So though it held at 50 acres for a while, it grew to over 12,000 acres and threaten the communities of Bucks Lake, Haskins Valley, Tollgate and Meadow Valley. An advisory remains in effect for portions of Bucks Lake.



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