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Local fire crews contain Newcastle forest fire
Firefighters from several local departments spent nearly two hours containing a forest fire near the Newcastle Golf Club Tuesday evening.
By the time firefighters arrived, the fire was one-and-a-half-acres, one quarter mile into the Cougar Mountain Park near Marshall's Hill Trail. They had to run 2,600 feet of hose uphill, through rough terrain in dark, from the 8300 block of 154th Avenue Southeast, to fight it.
A private aircraft pilot notified Renton air traffic control about the fire at 5:45 p.m.
"It appeared that it might have been some type of a camp fire or unattended warming fire," Craig Muller, a King County fire investigator said. Compared with other forest fires, it was relatively small, he said.
"The fire didn’t really do much damage to the park," Doug Williams, a media relations specialist for King County said. "Perhaps one or two conifers experienced enough root damage to die, but we’ll let nature take its course on those. Oregon grape, salal, some vine maple and other underbrush got scorched pretty good in the area, too."
The county plans to do a bit of cosmetic work to fix the trail that firefighters built to get to the fire's location. "The park – and Marshall’s Hill Trail – is open and safe for the public to use," he said. "Because the burned area is so far off the trail, we don’t expect anyone to be affected."