Firefighters have contained the wildfire that burned through 41,983 acres northeast of Covelo, one month after lightning ignited the Mendocino National Forest blaze, Cal Fire officials said Monday.
Crews secured a last link late Sunday in the line surrounding the still-smouldering North Pass Fire, said Kelly Wood, an incident spokesman who traveled from Arizona to aid the firefight.
Firefighters will continue patrolling the forest for several days, bolstering damaged roads and looking for hot spots, Wood said.
North Pass Fire
Contract tree faller Ray Mendoza from Redding watches a large fir tree fall in the ash after he cut it down because it was damaged by the North Pass fire in the Mendocino National Forest on Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2012. KENT PORTER/ PD
Bryan Scott, a U.S. Forest Service tree faller from the San Bernardino National Forest, takes a photograph of the North Pass fire off of Indian Dick Road near Covelo on Wednesday Aug. 29. 2012. KENT PORTER/ PD
Tents, used for helitack crews are pitched at the Covelo airport beneath the Mendocino National Forest and the North Pass fire, Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2012.. KENT PORTER/ PD
Bags of laundry wait to be washed at the North Pass fire base camp Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2012 in Covelo. KENT PORTER/ PD
Tents pitched at the base camp for the North Pass fire Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2012 in Covelo. KENT PORTER/ PD
The camp for firefighting personnel on Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2012 for the North Pass fire in the Mendocino National Forest east of Covelo. The camp is set up on tribal lands in Round Valley. KENT PORTER/ PD
Willits woke up under a blanket of smoke from the North Pass fire in the Mendocino National Forest east of Covelo on Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2012. KENT PORTER/ PD
Contract tree faller Ray Mendoza from Redding moves out of the way as a fir tree snag falls after he cut it down on Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2012. KENT PORTER/ PD
Burned trees stand sentinnel over a portion of the Mendocino National Forest, Wednesday August 29, 2012 near Covelo. (Kent Porter / Press Democrat) 2012
A sign on Highway 162 in Round Valley, Wednesday August 29, 2012,(Kent Porter / Press Democrat) 2012
However by week's end most crews will return home and the U.S. Forest Service will manage any further fire concerns.
Eight residences were destroyed in the fire, which started Aug. 18, although Wood said he didn't know if the buildings were full-time or seasonal homes.
The fire also destroyed 18 outbuildings, from wood sheds to outhouses. Cal Fire reported 11 injuries.
Heavy smoke still hung through swaths of the forest as the fire smoldering in stumps and other debris continued to burn itself out.
Access to certain areas of the forest remained limited.
Any visitors to the forest can find additional information on road closures and closed areas at www.fs.usda.gov/mendocino or by calling the Mendocino National Forest at (530) 934-3316, the Covelo District Office (707) 983-6118, or the Stonyford Work Center at (530) 963-3128.