Cascade Raft & Kayak feels the effects of the Highway 55 fire in Idaho

Posted at 5:17 PM, Jul 26, 2018
and last updated 2018-07-26 19:48:29-04

When Cascade Raft & Kayak heard about the Highway 55 fire, guides from the company drove two miles up the road with every fire extinguisher that they had.

"I think we had ten or twelve of them and they hopped in the car and flew up there and they almost got it contained," said Debbie Long the owner of Cascade Raft & Kayak. "A little bit of wind came and poof it went up a tree and they had to back off."

On Wednesday night the crew at Cascade Raft & Kayak watched the fire anxiously and waited for a call in case they had to evacuate.

On Thursday firefighters continued to work on containing the fire that has torched 2,000 acres and continues to grow to the east of the raft companies headquarters.

Idaho Power also had crews on sight attempting to restore power to nearby homes and businesses.

The raft company had to cancel trips on Wednesday when Highway 55 was closed to traffic and on Thursday they were forced to take a different route on the main section of the Payette River, the highway has reopened one lane, however officials advise the public to take an alternative route.

The fire caused some juggling for Cascade Raft & Kayak, but more than anything the rafting company was thankful that no injuries have been reported.

"It is petrifying," said Long. "First of all you are concerned with people getting hurt, we knew a lot of the firefighters that were up there."

The raft company and another source tell us the fire started because of a flat tire, however fire officials have not confirmed the cause.