BOISE COUNTY -- A suspected lightning-sparked fire in Wilderness Ranch forced the evacuation of families in around 20 homes Thursday afternoon. Those families were allowed to return home Thursday evening after the fire was extinguished, but not without some tense moments.
Wilderness Ranch is located along Highway 21 about 25 miles northeast of Boise.
Paul Hein lives in Wilderness Ranch and called the KTVB news room to say someone with the Boise County Sheriff's Office knocked on his door and said he should get out.
Around four homes had flames come within feet of them. Some families watched from afar as air tankers attacked flames near their homes.
"It's one of the harzards of living up here, you just know it. It's going to happen sometime," John Laz said.
Dave Olson with the Boise National Forest initially said about 30-40 structures were threatened in Wilderness Ranch. The fire is said to have blackened about 100 acres. As of Thursday night, the Wilderness Ranch Fire was contained.
Crews fought this fire on the ground and in the air. Tankers made retardant drops and helicopters made water bucket drops.
Olson says the winds behaved erratically and the fire jumped around, making it hard for firefighters.
In Crouch, about 30 small fire starts were reported, but no structures were threatened.
All of the fires are believed to be lightning caused as thunderstorms moved over the area Thursday afternoon.