Daily Archives: 15 June 2015

Sockeye Fire

The setting sun is partially obscured by smoke from an out of control wildfire on the Parks Highway near Willow, Alaska, in this picture courtesy of Mat-Su Borough taken June 14, 2015.  REUTERS/Mat-Su Borough/Stefan Hinman/Handout

Photo credit: REUTERS/Mat-Su Borough/Stefan Hinman/Handout June 14, 2015

We’ve had a couple of tundra fires so far this season, but with the lack of snow this past winter, it was only a matter of time for one to take off near a community.

Cue the Sockeye Fire near Willow, AK. Willow is just north of Anchorage, and as the official start of the Iditarod Sled Dog Race, it is the heart of mushing country.

Approximately 7000 acres has burned, along with at least 45 homes and another 20 structures. An estimated 250 people and over 500 sled dogs have been evacuated from the area, with the wildfire now raging on both sides of the Parks Highway. 1700 homes are under a voluntary evacuation ahead of the fire.

As of Monday afternoon, Alaska officials stated that 0% of the fire has been contained. They also confirmed that the fire was ignited by human activity, although the specific cause has not been released.