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Weekend Thunderstorms Lead to Several New Fires across the Region

KAMIAH —Another wave of monsoonal moisture made its way into north-central Idaho this weekend, more thunderstorms and resulting in several new fire starts on the Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forests. Initial attack efforts have been mostly successful, with accompanying precipitation limiting fire growth. Another round of thunderstorm activity is expected today and possibly tomorrow.

Current Fires on the Nez Perce-Clearwater NF as of reporting time:

Full Suppression Strategy Defined: This strategy implies that a fire will be “put out” as efficiently and effectively as possible while providing for both firefighter and public safety.

Point Protection Strategy Defined:  A wildfire response strategy which protects specific assets or highly valued resources from the wildfire and may also utilize features such as past wildfires or prescribed fires, roads, rivers, etc. to ultimately prevent the fire from impacting more distant values.

Moose Creek Ranger District

Fires with a Point Protection Strategy

The Glover Fire is located about 12 miles East of Lowell, ID and 5 miles East of Coolwater Lookout. This fire is approximately two acres in size. Local fire managers still do not expect any immediate impacts or closures to roads/trails/access.

The Little Copper Fire is located about 24 miles Southeast of Lowell, ID and six miles to the Southeast of Indian Hill Lookout. This fire is now approximately 60 acres and burning brush and timber. Fire activity has been low to moderate over the last week. There are no closures associated with this fire.

North Fork Ranger District

Fires with a Point Protection Strategy

The Lower Twin Fire is located about 20 miles Northeast of Headquarters, ID in brush and timber. This fire is approximately two acres in size and sits within a mile of Forest Service Trail #268. There are currently no closures in place for this fire.

The Wallow Fire is located about 25 miles Northeast of Headquarters, ID. This fire is approximately 25 acres in size and burning in brush and timber. This fire is within .15 miles of Forest Service Trail #101 leading to Wallow Mountain.

NEW CLOSURES: There is now a closure order in place for Forest Service Trail #101 from its junction with Forest Service Road #710 to its junction with FSR #5371. There is also a closure order in place for Forest Service Trail #268 from its junction with FSR #247 to the trail’s end.

The Bruin Hill Fire is located about 20 miles Northwest of Powell, ID within about 3.5 miles of the Idaho/Montana border. This fire is in close proximity to areas burnt by previous wildfires. Fire activity has been minimal, only showing light smoke yesterday. There are no closures associated with this fire.

Lochsa-Powell Ranger District

Fires with a Full Suppression Strategy

The Rocky Fire is about .5 acres and located approximately five miles Northeast of Powell, ID. This fire currently has seven personnel from the San Juan Interagency Hotshot Crew staffing it and now has containment line around it.

The Russian Fire is about 2.5 acres and located approximately five miles Northeast of Powell, ID. This fire currently has 10 personnel from the San Juan Interagency Hotshot Crew assigned and is roughly 30 percent contained.

The Huckleberry and the Dewy Fires are both about .10 acres in size and expect to be declared out within a few days.

Fires with a Point Protection Strategy

The Castle Fire is located about 28 miles Northeast of Lowell, ID. The current size is approximately 377 acres with minimal fire activity or growth over the last couple of days. Castle Butte Lookout and radio repeater site remain safe and operational.

The Van Camp Fire is located about 15 miles Northeast of Syringa, ID. This fire is now 283 acres and has potential to impact several roads and trails. Fire Managers expect closures to be put into place for FSR #481 and #481-S, as well as Forest Service Trails #192, #705, and #16 (Van Camp Trail). More closure information will be forthcoming as it is made available.

The Fire Creek Fire is located within the Coolwater Rx prescribed fire project boundary. This fire is currently estimated at a little over 100 acres and continues to show low to moderate activity as it backs down the slope to the Northeast.

The Post Office Fire is located about 14 miles Northwest of Powell, ID. This fire is currently approximately 30 acres in size and resistant to initial attack efforts. Fire Managers expect some road and trail closure orders to be put in place near this fire. More closure information will be forthcoming as it is made available.

The Howard Creek Fire is located about 18 miles West of Powell, ID. This fire is approximately 5 acres in size.  

Every fire receives a strategic, risk-based response that is commensurate with the threats and opportunities of that given incident, and uses the full spectrum of management actions that consider fire and fuel conditions, weather, values at risk, and resources available. These considerations are in alignment with the applicable Land and Resource Management Plan.

Wilderness Policy:  The objectives of fire management in Designated Wilderness are to permit lightning-caused fires to play, as nearly as possible, their natural ecological role within Wilderness, and to reduce to an acceptable level the risks and consequences of wildfire within Wilderness or escaping from Wilderness.

Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forests fire information is available online at https://bit.ly/NPCFireInfo, on social media at www.facebook.com/NPClwNFs and www.twitter.com/NPClwNFs, on the forest’s official mobile app (search “Nez Perce Clearwater” in your app store), or by calling your local ranger station. Report all wildfires to the Grangeville Interagency Dispatch Center (208-983-6800) or call 911.