The last 48 hours have been a challenge for firefighters in the Columbia River Gorge.
Warm, dry winds have pushed the blaze over Herman Creek, allowing the Eagle Creek Fire to make a 3-mile run. But authorities say they’re still able to protect nearby communities.
Multnomah County Sheriff Mike Reese has reduced evacuation orders, which includes lifting Level 1 evacuations for all areas of Troutdale, west of the Sandy River.
People living in about 100 homes closer to the fire have also been allowed to return. But they will have to check in at the Corbett Community Church first to get a permit.
The fire is 13 percent contained and about 1,700 people remain under evacuation orders near Crown Point and in Cascade Locks.
The Oregon Department of Transportation said it will be assessing the threat of landslides for months after the fire. That’s because the roots of vegetation and trees killed won’t be able to hold the soil together.
ODOT said crews are using snow plows to clear fallen rocks and trees from the Historic Columbia River Highway. It’s not yet clear when Interstate 84 will reopen.
One person has been cited for hiking into the area and flying a drone to collect video footage.