LOCAL NEWS

Homes Evacuated, Structures Threatened In Wildfire Near Mammoth Creek

Jun 5, 2021, 7:49 PM | Updated: Jul 5, 2023, 5:25 pm

MAMMOTH CREEK, Utah — Air and ground crews have responded to a new wildfire near Mammoth Creek in Dixie National Forest.

The Mammoth Fire, which started just before noon Saturday, has burned an estimated 566 acres and is 0% contained, as of 2:30 p.m. Sunday.

Public Information Officer Kevin Abel with Dixie National Forest said around 250 homes and cabins and about 150 people in the Mammoth Creek Village were evacuated.

Some of those people have lived in the area for decades.

“The family and myself have built the cabin ourselves. It’s a dome home,” said Bob Donaldson, who was evacuated. “We just go up there and hug the trees and it’s great, haha, it’s just great.”

He and his wife live in St. George, but for the past 35 years, they’ve spent their summers in Mammoth Creek.

In fact, they just got to the area Saturday.

“We’d been up there for about two hours. We’d unloaded the SUV, and all of a sudden, a lady comes by in her big truck and says, ‘Big problems coming up,'” said Donaldson.

The fire was originally estimated at 400 acres, but it grew Sunday due to high winds, according to fire officials.

“Just a huge billow of smoke coming up to the south and west of our property, probably two or three miles away. It’s a little scary to see it. At first, it was just a wisp, and then, it became much, much larger,” said Donaldson.

The blaze was said to be burning through Ponderosa pine and Douglas Fir.

“They’re getting a line in south of Mammoth Creek Village to stop the fire from entering the town,” Abel said Sunday afternoon.

Fire officials said they’ve got multiple teams from different agencies fighting the fire. About a hundred firefighters, they said, were working it from the ground.

“It’s everything from hand crews to fire engines, bulldozers,” said Abel. “[Sunday] we had four single-engine air tankers up and two large air tankers.”

One of the firefighters even helped Donaldson get out safely.

“He came by and said, ‘Bob, we’ve got to evacuate you. We’re evacuating everybody on the mountain,’ and so he helped us pack up our car again and we drove out,” said Donaldson.

The good news, so far, is firefighters have been able to keep the fire away from homes and cabins.

As of 10 p.m. Sunday, fire officials said no structures have been lost and no one has been hurt.

The cause of the fire was under investigation.

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Homes Evacuated, Structures Threatened In Wildfire Near Mammoth Creek