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State Route 20 reopens after wildfire closure

Sourdough Fire remains at 1,750 acres

The Sourdough Fire is visible from Newhalem. State Route 20 reopened Wednesday
The Sourdough Fire is visible from Newhalem. State Route 20 reopened Wednesday
By Julia Lerner Staff Reporter

State Route 20 has reopened to vehicles after a four-day closure related to the Sourdough Fire, the Washington State Department of Transportation said Wednesday, Aug. 9. 

The wildfire has burned about 1,750 acres since a late July lightning storm in North Cascades National Park, and is currently at 0% containment. On Friday, Aug. 4, the fire forced the closure of state Route 20 between mile markers 120-156.

The road is now passable, according to a Wednesday fire update from the Northwest Incident Management Team, but the National Park Service has closed camping, trailheads, overlooks, pullouts and other recreation east of Newhalem. 

Fire personnel, including six helicopters, nine hand crews, 26 engines and five water tenders, remain on-site, according to a news release. 

Those crews continue to secure structures around the Diablo community, and anticipate rainy, wet weather with high humidity throughout Wednesday afternoon — limiting additional fire spread. 

Evacuations remain in effect for the North Cascades Environmental Learning Center and Diablo, located near the fire in the challenging Ross Lake National Recreation Area. 

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