Numerous lightning-caused starts have been detected across the Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forests due to a late afternoon thunderstorm on July 14.
Currently, 18 fires have been detected on the Lochsa/Powell, Moose Creek, and Red River Ranger districts with additional possible starts continuing to be reported.
Forest and Fire Management Staff considered the long-term effects of smoke in their decision to manage fires in the wilderness and roadless areas.
“We are very sensitive to health impacts due to wildfire smoke and take measures to reduce the long duration fires when we can,” said Cheryl Probert, Forest supervisor. Fire managers are working with air quality specialists to monitor smoke and potential impacts to communities.
In addition to smoke impacts, values at risk, availability of resources, and location were considered in determining suppression actions of fires not threatening communities.
Fire activity across the nation has significantly increased and the National Preparedness Level (PL) is currently 4. PL 4 means that three or more Geographic Areas are experiencing wildland fire incidents requiring Type 1 and 2 Incident Management Teams. Competition exists for resources between Geographic Areas. Nationally, 60% of Type 1 and 2 Incident Management Teams and crews are committed to wildland fire incidents.
The following fire information is based on the latest updates on Wednesday, July 19.
Lochsa/Powell Ranger District
Fires currently staffed on the Lochsa/Powell District:
Parachute – 0.25 acres, approximately four miles northeast of Powell.
Storm – 0.25 acres
Cherokee – 4 acres
Twin #322 – 0.25 acres
Round Top 1 – 0.5 acres
All located approximately five miles south of Lolo Pass
Checkerboard – 1.5 acres, located near the Idaho/Montana border approximately five miles east of Lolo Pass.
Pappoose – 6.5 acres, located approximately four miles northwest of Powell.
Granite – .25 acres, located two miles west of Granite Pass
Crab – .25 acres, located seen miles east of Powell
Brushy – 11 acres, located north of Brushy Fork about four miles south of Lolo Pass.
Hidden – 1 acre, located in the Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness, currently unstaffed and is being managed for resource benefits.
Maud – .25 acres, located in a roadless area south of Beaver Ridge is also being managed for resource benefits and is currently unstaffed.
For more information on current fire status or closures for public safety due to wildfire, please call (208) 942-3113.
Moose Creek Ranger District
Moose Creek 1 – 100 acres and .25 miles east and southeast of Moose Creek Ranger Station. Crews are implementing a Point Protection strategy for building and bridges in and near the historic Moose Creek Ranger Station. Structure protection measures include wrapping buildings and installing sprinkler systems.
Mink Peak – .5 acres, located on Mink Peak.
Lone Pine – .5 acres, located .25 miles west of Lone Pine Point in Marten Creek. The Lone Pine fire is 1.5 miles south of the Three Links bridges.
Elbow Bend fire is one mile south of Roll Point and 1.8 miles northeast of Elbow Bend.
All wilderness fires were started by lightning and will be managed for resource benefits.
For more information on current fire status or closures for public safety due to wildfire, please call (208) 926-4258.
Red River Ranger District
Fires currently being managed for resource benefits on the Red River Ranger District are located approximately 14 miles east of Red River Ranger Station.
Ladder – 2 acres
Rattlesnake Point – 6 acres
Bleak – 15 acres, located 3.5 miles southwest of Dry Saddle near the Magruder Road.
Little Mallard – 1 acre, located two miles northeast of Dixie. In mop up stage
For more information on current fire status or closures for public safety due to wildfire, please call (208) 842-2245.
Fire and closure information will be posted on the Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forests website at www.fs.usda.gov/nezperceclearwater.