Category Archives: Fire Updates 2016

Prescribed burning on East Fork South Fork

10/05/2016

The Payette National Forest, Krassel Ranger District is planning on burning on the East Fork of the South Fork with ignition occurring sometime between Oct 9 and October 31. Attached is a map, general location is 5 miles west of Yellowpine in the Deadman and Reegan creek drainages. Please feel free to give a call to myself at 208-634-0622 or Justin Pappani at 208-634-0623.

[scroll down for map]
Bald Hill info sign 2016.docx

Laurel Ingram
Fuels Technician- detail
Forest Service
Payette National Forest
Krassel Ranger District
p: 208-634-0622
lenelson @ fs.fed.us

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Fire Update Sept 30

Pioneer Fire

Boise National Forest

Date of Origin Monday July 18th, 2016
Location 8 miles north of Idaho City
Total Personnel 242
Size 188,404 Acres
Containment 71%

http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/4866/

Pioneer Fire Maps
http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/maps/4866/

Final Perimeter Map 71% Contained 09/29/16


Boise National Forest opens some area within the Pioneer Fire

9/30/2016

BOISE, Idaho, September 30, 2016 – The Boise National Forest has reduced the Pioneer Fire Closure Area and instead, specific roads, trails and areas will remain closed for public safety and protection from hazards associated with wildfire.

Please refer to the attached closure order and map for details about specific locations roads or trails. The area closure order and map can be viewed online at http://www.fs.usda.gov/alerts/boise/alerts-notices.

The new closures are effective immediately and visitors to the forest are reminded when entering burned areas be aware of snags and other safety hazards. Crews continue to monitor and patrol the fire for initial attack for any new wildfire starts.

continued:
http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/article/4866/34010/
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Fire Update Sept 29

Pioneer Fire

Boise National Forest

Date of Origin Monday July 18th, 2016
Location 8 miles north of Idaho City
Total Personnel 242
Size 188,404 Acres
Containment 71%

http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/4866/

Pioneer Fire Maps
http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/maps/4866/

Final Pioneer Fire Update – Sept. 29

LOWMAN, Idaho – Possible thunderstorms this afternoon are keeping firefighters on the Pioneer Fire aware of a potential increase in fire behavior today as outflow winds may reach 25-30 miles an hour. These winds may hinder aircraft that have flown over the fire the past two days.

While the Fire is now 71 percent contained, firefighters are still actively engaged in keeping the fire in check. Crooked River, Scott Creek, and areas west of Bear Creek are actively burning single and group trees. This increase in activity is due to several warm and dry days that have dried vegetation. Firefighters are holding containment lines and using helicopters to cool inaccessible areas that are beginning to torch.

The weather will begin to change this afternoon and into the weekend, bringing cooler, moist conditions. This will keep fire behavior to a minimum until snow blankets the fire area. By Monday, snow is expected in elevations above 7,000 feet.

A transfer of command from Great Basin Team 5 to the Boise National Forest will occur tomorrow morning at 6 a.m. The Forest will maintain fire suppression efforts taking place above the 579 Road. Less than a mile of dozer repair work remains on the 579 Road. One excavator will complete this work by Saturday.

There are many hazards that exist after a wildfire passes. If recreating in the fire area, be extremely cautious. Rootless trees still standing can easily blow down; rocks can roll out bringing additional woody debris onto roads, and after rain events, mud slides can occur. While many of these hazards have been removed on major roads, many areas are not safe for public use. If in areas where trees have burnt, do not assume they are stable as slight winds can easily blow them down. When hiking in steep canyons, be mindful of footing and loose debris that may roll out above and below you.

Due to these unsafe conditions, the Forest will maintain security at area closure points to help guide the public to safer areas to recreate. Patrols will also be ongoing to assist travelers.

The Forest Area Closure currently in effect for the Pioneer Fire will be reduced in the near future, possibly as soon as Saturday. Please contact the Lowman or Idaho City District Offices for questions.

Idaho City Ranger District: 208.392.6681
Lowman Ranger District: 208.259.3361
http://www.fs.usda.gov/boise

This will be the final update on the Pioneer Fire unless significant activity occurs. Please check the Forest web page for updates on area closures and other fire information. 2pioneerfire2016@gmail.com will no longer be monitored. Please direct questions to the District Offices, listed above.

Acres: 188,404 Containment: 71 percent Personnel: 242
Cost: $95.7M Resources assigned: 2 crews, 2 helicopters, 7 engines, 1 water tender

Final Perimeter Map 71% Contained 09/29/16

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Fire Update Sept 28

Pioneer Fire

Boise National Forest

Date of Origin Monday July 18th, 2016
Location 8 miles north of Idaho City
Total Personnel 275
Size 188,404 Acres
Containment 65%

http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/4866/

Pioneer Fire Maps
http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/maps/4866/

Sept. 28 Pioneer Fire Update

LOWMAN, Idaho – Fire activity on the Pioneer Fire is increasing due to continued warming and drying. For the second day in a row, a helicopter delivered water to cool torching trees along the ridge above Scott’s Creek. In Joyce Creek, the fire is creeping downhill, moving about 70 feet per day. It is still well within the Fire’s perimeter.

In many areas on the western flank, the terrain is unsafe for firefighters to take direct action. In these places, the fire is consuming needles, pine cones and other debris on the forest floor that will recycle nutrients and provide forage for deer and elk in the spring. Fire scars are still holding the fire in check and air resources are assisting firefighters with locating trouble spots that may need attention.

A spot fire half the size of a football field was detected off of the 510 Road Tuesday. A handcrew constructed containment line around it to keep it in place. An engine crew will monitor it today.

There is one and a half miles of dozer line left to repair north of the 579 Road. Three excavators are working on it. Operators expect to complete this work Friday or Saturday.

Over the course of two weeks, firefighters have found more than 130 pumps, several miles of miscellaneous hoses, repaired several miles of containment lines, and removed flagging, signs and other markings of firefighter’s presence. As firefighters leave the area, they are also closing identified gates.

The persistent warming and drying trend is pushing temperatures in Lowman to nearly 90 degrees. This is 15 degrees above normal. This high pressure system will begin to break down Thursday, bringing a slight of thunderstorms Thursday afternoon. Beginning early next week, a hint of snow showers above 7,000 feet is possible. This will dampen much of the remaining hot spots as fall-like weather returns.

A transfer of command from Great Basin Team 5 back to the Boise National Forest will occur Friday, September 30th. Tomorrow will be the final update on the Pioneer Fire unless significant activity occurs.

For more information about remaining forest closures, visit the Boise National Forest website at: http://www.fs.usda.gov/alerts/boise/alerts-notices .

EVACUATION NOTICES: A Level 1 Evacuation Notice is in effect for The Summer Homes in Long Creek area.

Acres: 188,404 Containment: 65 percent Personnel: 275
Cost: $95.1M Resources assigned: 4 crews, 4 helicopters, 11 engines, 1 water tender

Fire Update Sept 27

Pioneer Fire bill rises as fire-cost reform stalls in Congress

By Rocky Barker September 25, 2016 Idaho Statesman

Rain has cooled the flames of Idaho’s Pioneer Fire , which at more than 188,000 acres is the largest fire in the nation.

The fire started west of Idaho City in the backcountry July 18, around the same time the Mile Marker 14 Fire was threatening homes in the Boise Foothills. The Pioneer Fire grew and threatened Lowman and rural homes along the South Fork of the Payette River as well as hamlets like Pioneerville for weeks.

Most of the local criticism of the firefighting effort was the traditional view that firefighters should have been able to corral it before it got big. But while firefighters put out 98 percent of wildfires, the 2 percent that escape account for 30 percent of the costs in forests thick with fuel after a century of fire suppression and because of climate change.

No homes were burned and no lives lost. Thousands of acres of timber burned, smoke filled communities including Boise and Stanley, and roads and forest lands popular for recreation were closed for weeks.

At Pioneer’s peak, 1,800 firefighters fought the fire, along with dozens of engines, airplanes, helicopters and seven different fire management teams.

The cost of the fire exceeded $93 million by Thursday, and with 430 firefighters still on the ground rehabilitating fire lines and completing containment, the cost is certain to exceed $100 million before it is done.

continued:
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Pioneer Fire

Boise National Forest

Date of Origin Monday July 18th, 2016
Location 8 miles north of Idaho City
Total Personnel 336
Size 188,404 Acres
Containment 65%

http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/4866/

Pioneer Fire Maps
http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/maps/4866/

Sept 27th Pioneer Fire Update

LOWMAN, Idaho – Temperatures in the Lowman area soared to the mid 80’s yesterday, marking a 12 degree jump from normal. Consequently, areas above Scott’s Creek and Nellie Creek that are exposed to sun and wind began torching. For the first time in a week, firefighters called on the assistance of a helicopter to deliver water.

The warming and drying trend will build through tomorrow. Trees in the interior may begin torching while pockets of heat that are still smoldering may begin to creep as a result. Firefighters are in key locations to take action if necessary to prevent further growth.

An infrared flight took place last night to detect areas of heat that remain of concern to firefighters. A spot below the Deadwood Lookout and a spot behind the Summer Homes in Long Creek will be assessed today. If firefighters can access the areas, they will mop-up the heat. Isolated pockets of heat will require firefighter’s attention until sustained rain or snow extinguishes the Fire.

Crews are repairing suppression impacts in areas where the Fire is cold. This includes collecting unnecessary hoses, pumps, equipment, flagging and other signage that has accumulated over time.

In the northern parts of the fire, crews are removing snags along the 555 and associated spur roads. Two pieces of dozer line are being repaired by three excavators. These are located above the Middle Fork of Warm Springs Creek and north of the 579 Road west of Deer Flat. Firefighters will finish most of the repair work by the weekend.

Firefighters are also repairing steep handlines that once tied into Scott Creek. This involves placing water bars and covering the four foot wide containment line with cut vegetation. This activity reduces erosion and stream sedimentation, which is important to protect fish habitat. This also reduces scarring and will prevent future use of the area.

In the southern part of the fire, a machine is chipping woody debris along the 316 Road.

There will be very little change in the unseasonably warm temperatures and drying conditions. Skies will be mostly sunny through the day and into Wednesday. Fire behavior may increase as these conditions persist.

For more information about remaining forest closures, visit the Boise National Forest website at: http://www.fs.usda.gov/alerts/boise/alerts-notices .

EVACUATION NOTICES: The Summer Homes in Long Creek area are at a Level 1 Notices.

HUNTING INFORMATION: https://idfg.idaho.gov/blog/2016/08/get-current-fire-information-here.

Acres: 188,404 Containment: 65 percent Personnel: 336
Cost: $95.0M Resources assigned: 4 crews, 5 helicopters, 14 engines, 1 water tender
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Fire Update Sept 26

Pioneer Fire

Boise National Forest

Date of Origin Monday July 18th, 2016
Location 8 miles north of Idaho City
Total Personnel 334
Size 188,404 Acres
Containment 65%

http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/4866/

Pioneer Fire Maps
http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/maps/4866/

September 26 Pioneer Fire Update

Lowman, Idaho – Firefighters on the Pioneer Fire are working hard to complete repair work by the end of this week. While a few hot spots of the fire are being watched to ensure it does not creep outside containment lines, three excavators, four handcrews and 14 engines are working to finish up handline and dozer repair.

Unseasonably warm and dry weather is settling over the area. Isolated trees are torching near Scott and Nellies Creeks. Areas off the 510 Road are also exhibiting increased fire behavior. Trees burning in the Crooked Creek drainage are producing smoke visible from the Jackson Peak Lookout. Firefighters monitoring this area do not expect to take action due to the extremely rugged terrain.

The Fire continues to show pockets of heat where it crossed the 555 Road near Scott Creek and at the northwest tip between Deer Creek and Bearskin Creek. Firefighters are extinguishing these areas, and repairing the last of the control lines near the 555 and 591 Roads. Felling crews are cutting hazardous trees along roads and trails near Rock Creek and Deadwood.

The feller-buncher with a processor head will finish work on the 316 Road. A chipper is starting work to chip the debris left behind. This work should take two or three days.

An excavator will complete repair work on the dozer line near Warm Springs Creek today or tomorrow. Two other excavators are repairing dozer line in the vicinity of Deer Flat, north of the 579 Road. They expect to finish repairing the dozer line by the end of the week.

As firefighters complete work assignments, they are being released home. The spike camp located at Deadwood Reservoir has just over 200 firefighters in camp. The area is closed to the public to allow firefighters faster and safer access to work areas. There is a lot of heavy equipment traveling the 579 Road, so please be careful if hunting or gathering wood along the road.

Pre-identified crews, engines, and other equipment are available for initial attack on new fires in the vicinity as needed. Over the last few days, helicopters assigned to the Pioneer Fire have been instrumental in helping the Boise National Forest control several new fire starts, including one near Pilot Peak.

A Fire Area Closure remains in effect. A map and detailed information are located at: http://www.fs.usda.gov/alerts/boise/alerts-notices.

EVACUATION NOTICES: The Summer Homes in the Long Creek area is at a Level 1 Notice.

HUNTING INFORMATION: https://idfg.idaho.gov/blog/2016/08/get-current-fire-information-here

Acres: 188,404 Containment: 65% Personnel: 334
Cost: $94.7M Resources assigned: 4 crews, 4 helicopters, 14 engines, 4 water tenders

Fire Update Sept 25

Pioneer Fire

Boise National Forest

Date of Origin Monday July 18th, 2016
Location 8 miles north of Idaho City
Total Personnel 360
Size 188,404 Acres
Containment 65%

http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/4866/

Pioneer Fire Maps
http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/maps/4866/

September 25 Pioneer Fire Update

Lowman, Idaho – As the 70th day dawns on the Pioneer Fire, a warming and drying trend is setting up. This will increase the potential for the Fire to begin creeping in areas where vegetation is exposed to wind and direct sunlight. Occasional tree torching may occur midweek as the timber and grasses dry. The Fire is not growing, which is allowing firefighters to slowly increase the Fire’s containment.

Several places that have been dormant for some time are revealing wispy smokes. This includes areas above Crooked River, Scott Creek and the higher elevations of Miller Mountain above South Fork. Several of these locations are not easily accessible to firefighters. Last night, an infrared flight took place. This will help firefighters pinpoint heat today. They will extinguish the hotspots if they are able to reach them safely.

A feller-buncher with a processor head working on the 316 Road should complete the road work today and will move to another repair project Monday. A chipper is ready to begin chipping the woody debris left by the feller-buncher. The repair work on the Road will be complete when the chipper is finished.

Firefighters will begin repairing contingency lines that were discovered Saturday between the 555 Road and the northern part of the Fire today. Excavators are beginning their second shift repairing dozer lines near Deer Flat north of the 579 Road, and west of Warm Springs Creek. This work should be complete by mid to late week.

Timber fallers are cutting hazard trees along the 582 Road and Rock Creek, making the roads safer for travel. It will also make it safer for those who have permits to collect wood.

Handcrews are picking up hose, pumps and other equipment from fire lines and returning it to the Incident Command Post. Camp crews are inventorying and packaging it in preparation for returning them to a larger cache in Boise, Idaho.

There is heavy traffic on the 579 Road, including fire personnel, hunters, woodcutters, and general recreationists. Please drive slowly and remember to share the road. Watch for fallen rocks and woody debris on Hwy 21 and 17.

A Fire Area Closure remains in effect. A map and detailed information is located at: http://www.fs.usda.gov/alerts/boise/alerts-notices.

EVACUATION NOTICES: The Summer Homes in the Long Creek area is at a Level 1 Notice.

HUNTING INFORMATION: https://idfg.idaho.gov/blog/2016/08/get-current-fire-information-here

Acres: 188,404 Containment: 65% Personnel: 360
Cost: $94.4M Resources assigned: 5 crews, 4 helicopters, 14 engines, 4 water tenders