Idaho wildfire update: Tuesday, July 23

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by KTVB.COM

NWCN.com

Posted on July 23, 2013 at 3:03 PM

BOISE -- About 10 major wildfires are actively burning in central and southern Idaho, covering more than 28,000 acres.

The two largest fires are the Papoose Fire burning west of Salmon, Idaho and the Brown Butte Fire burning northeast of Shoshone, Idaho. Each of these fires has torched over 7,000 acres.

The most recent is the 210 Fire, which broke out near Redfish Lake Lodge on Monday afternoon in the Sawtooth National Forest.

Flames and smoke caused the evacuation of nearby campgrounds and the Red Fish Lake Lodge. That fire is also currently threatening several summer cabins and a nearby state fish hatchery.

BOISE NATIONAL FOREST

In the Boise National Forest, a regional fire team is preparing to leave the 2,797-acre Pine Creek Fire, which briefly threatened the community of Clear Creek, and is about 90-percent contained. That team is expected to turn over command of the fire to local firefighters within the next few days.

Also in the Boise National Forest, firefighters continue to battle the 3,704-acre Ridge Fire north of Lowman. That fire is only 10-percent contained and continues to burn further toward the north.

Fire officials are expecting the arrival of four new fire crews to battle the Ridge Fire on Tuesday. Those crews will be tasked with building fire line on the north edge of the fire.

Better news for firefighters battling the 370-acre Summit Fire close to Pilot Peak north of Idaho City. That fire is 93-percent contained, according to officials with the Idaho Department of Lands. Firefighters are expected to leave that fire for other areas in the next few days.

PAYETTE NATIONAL FOREST

Meanwhile, in the Payette National Forest, firefighters are working to contain the 416-acre Thunder City Fire near Yellow Pine, Idaho and northeast of the Stibnite Mining District.

A smaller fire known as the Bear Creek Fire is burning about 10 miles northeast of Yellow Pine, but officials say only a small team of firefighters has been dispatched to monitor that fire.

Fire managers say about 159 firefighters are currently in the area, and most are staging at the Johnson Creek airstrip and Johnson Creek Guard Station. The airstrip remains open for public use.

A public meeting is scheduled for Thursday, July 25 at 11 a.m. at the Yellow Pine Community Center.

SALMON-CHALLIS NATIONAL FOREST

Three major fires are burning in the Salmon-Challis National Forest, covering about 8,800 acres.

The Papoose Fire burning west of Salmon has now grown to 7,771 acres after lightning started it on Monday, July 8. 

Firefighters say the Papoose Fire has the potential to impact boaters and rafters on the Middle Fork of the Salmon River. Area visitors are asked to check with forest service personnel before making camping and boating plans.  The fire has also closed several trails in the area.

The Lodgepole Fire is burning about 1,000 acres near the Mosquito Flat Reservoir, west of Corkscrew Mountain. That's near Challis, Idaho.

Firefighters have evacuated Mosquito Flat Campground and surrounding areas. A road closure is also in effect.

The 50-acre Bradley Fire broke out on July 20, and caused the evacuation of the nearby Bradley Boy Scout Camp.

The Bradley Fire is burning north of the Stanley Valley near Cape Horn Summit in the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness, and also near the border of the 2012 Halstead Fire. 

Firefighters say that fire is about 10-percent contained. 

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