Appeal-Democrat Archive Writing

Fire blackens Buttes

September 24, 2007

Lightning sparked a fire around the Sutter Buttes over the weekend that kept firefighters busy for more than 12 hours.

The fire burned between 250 and 280 acres on the east side of Peace Valley, said Sutter Fire Chief Dan Yager. No structures were burned nor was there any injuries resulting from the blaze.

Since the fire started at the top of a hill, fighting it was difficult, Yager said. The fire moved downhill faster than firefighters could move up to it.

To make matters worse, Yager said the area was too far away for hoses and remote enough to make it difficult to get in trucks. As a result, the strategy was to isolate the fire, Yager said.

Bulldozers and Cal Fire hand crews worked to carve a line around the fire. The fire started at 11:48 p.m. Friday and wasn’t extinguished until after noon on Saturday, Yager said.

“It was very labor intensive,” he said.

Crews from five units responded to the fire. Cal Fire firefighters were joined by Sutter County and Meridian units to head off the fire. In all, 23 fire engines, bulldozers and other vehicles, along with 67 fire personnel responded to the fire, Yager said.

The Peace Valley area was purchased by the California Department of Parks and Recreation in 2004 in hopes of building a park in the Sutter Buttes.

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