Crews in southwest Oregon are contending with hotter, drier weather Monday as they try to contain clusters of forest fires ignited by lightning in late July.
Among them are the Big Windy fires in the Rogue River Canyon, 25 miles northwest of Grants Pass which grew steadily over the weekend to an acreage of 9,192 acres. Firefighters are trying to keep the flames south of the river. On the north side are lodges and a cabin once owned by western novelist Zane Grey. Crews put out a few small fires on the north side Sunday.
The Brimstone fire near Merlin was 80 percent contained as of Monday morning. Management of the fire will transition to a "Type 3" incident.
The 35,633 acre fires in the Douglas Complex were 16 percent contained as of midday. That includes the Milo, Rabbit Mountain, Dad's Creek and Farmer's fires. Over 26-hundred firefighters were battling the blazes.
There is still no containment of the Labrador fire northwest of Cave Junction. Crews advanced Sunday to the head of Baker Creek to access ares of fire activity. At last report, the fire had burned 2,020 acres.
Fires burning in the Whiskey Complex near Tiller were 25 percent contained as of the latest update. The four fires in the complex have burned 6,245 acres.
There's a chance of new fires this week. Lightning is expected to begin Tuesday evening in the southern part of the state and strike farther north as the week wears on. The fire forecasts say the storms could bring some moisture later in the week.