Columbia River open to boat traffic after Eagle Creek Fire force - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Columbia River open to boat traffic after Eagle Creek Fire forced closure

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Courtesy: Nolan Jameson Photography Courtesy: Nolan Jameson Photography

TROUTDALE, OR - The Columbia River is back open to boat traffic after being closed for about a week. Firefighters say they're making good progress on the Eagle Creek Fire.

Flames have destroyed over 35,000 acres. 

Interstate 84 is still closed between Hood River and Troutdale while The Oregon Department of Transportation cleans up the roads. These closures are changing so we recommend checking trip check.com before you leave. You can find that by clicking here. A good alternate route to the Portland area is through Highway 14.

Crews are hoping to have it fully contained by September 30th.

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HOOD RIVER, OR - The Eagle Creek Fire has jumped the Columbia River and is now burning about five acres on the south side of Archer Mountain. 

The Oregon State Department of Transportation closed both directions of Interstate 84 are still closed between The Dalles and Troutdale because of that blaze. 

The fire has already burned over 4,800 acres and has forced several evacuations, but some people are staying behind to help first responders in anyway they can.

In Washington, people living on Archer Mountain Road, Franz Road, Smith Cripe Road, Kellet Road, and Victoria Lane are under level 3 evacuations.

In Oregon, Warrendale, Dodson, Larch Mountain, Latourell, Bridal Veil, and East Corbett are under a level 3 evacuation notice. Corbett and Springdale should be ready to go. Evacuation shelter is set up at Mt. Hood Community College located at 3691 NE 17th Drive, Gresham OR.

Traffic is being diverted on I-84 near The Dalles, Highway 14 on the Washington side of the Columbia River is still open. For the latest road closures and conditions, click here.

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STEVENSON, WA - All of this smoke and haze is mostly coming from two big fires burning to the west of us...the Eagle Creek Fire and the Jolly Mountain Fire.

Reporter Jaclyn Selesky went to the Rock Creek Community Center in Stevenson, Washington, which is in Skamania County, where one of many Red Cross shelters are and where people are evacuating to.

The Eagle Creek Fire is still actively burning and moving right now, with more than 500 firefighters working on it.

Most of the people coming to this shelter have been coming from the Cascade Locks.

As of right now, there are over 100 people here staying in cots, tents, or RVs. Evacuees started coming on Sunday, but last night there was a huge influx of evacuees because that's when winds blew embers from the fire to the Washington side of the Columbia River. Jaclyn spoke with one evacuee who has lived in the Cascade Locks for 30 years, who says this is heartbreaking.

"This fire is scary," said Rebecca Groves. "It's ruining people's homes, beautiful things that we look at every day and now it's just burnt to trees."

The fire started on Saturday, and officials think it was caused by fireworks. 

The Eagle Creek Fire has now burned more than 10,000 acres and was estimated to be around 4,800 around 10:00 p.m. last night. As of today, it grew significantly this morning and a new fire started near Archer Mountain in Washington.

On top of all these evacuations, more than 30 miles of Interstate 84 is closed off through the Columbia River Gorge between Troutdale and Hood River.

The ODOT spokesman says the parts of the freeway will probably stay closed all day today because of poor visibility and the fire getting closer to the road.

There are other Red Cross shelters in Gresham, Oregon at Mt. Hood Community College, and there's on in Brookings, Oregon.

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