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Crews reinforce containment lines on Pioneer Fire; dry, warmer weather forecasted for the weekend

Posted at 12:26 PM, Sep 07, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-07 14:26:57-04

Fire crews continue to focus their efforts to keep the Pioneer Fire east of the Deadwood Reservoir and south of National Forest System Road 579.

The fire is burning in heavy terrain between Idaho City and Lowman. It’s currently at 181,297 acres and 56% contained. 988 personnel are assigned to the fire. Resources include: 21 crews, 9 helicopters, 30 engines, 4 dozers, 17 water tenders and 3 masticators.

Containment strategies are heavily dependent on how the weather develops over the next several days, according to a Boise National Forest news release.

The current period of cool, wet weather is predicted to move out by the weekend, with a forecast of sunny days with no precipitation, That, coupled with relative humidity iexpected to drop into the teens, could prompt the fire to escalate. 

“Crews will conduct suppression activities -- including building direct fire lines where possible without risking firefighter safety. Where direct engagement is not possible, containment lines are being constructed along National Forest System Road 591,” the release said.  “Firefighters are clearing both sides of the road to make it defensible in the event the fire pushes towards that boundary.”

Over the next several days, burning in the fire’s interior will continue to create smoke that will impact Garden Valley, Lowman, Stanley and the surrounding areas. 

The Warm Springs, Bruce Meadows and Landmark airstrips are now open for public use. A temporary flight restriction is still in place to the west of Trail #147/Warm Springs Creek Trail. Trail #147 can be used to access Bull Trout Lake; users of Trail #147 can stay out of the closure area by keeping to the east side of the trail.
Private and commercial aircraft, as well as privately-owned drones are prohibited from entering restricted airspace. 

Recreationists, hunters and community members should note that closure orders remain in effect for multiple roads and trails. Enforcement of closure orders continue to be in place to ensure the safety of the public and firefighters assigned to the incident. Current closure information is at http://www.fs.usda.gov/alerts/boise/alerts-notices.

Level 2 evacuation orders remain in effect for seasonal homes located near Clear Creek; Level 1, for Pioneerville and Lowman; and for structures in the South Fork Road area, east of Grimes Creek and along the South Fork Payette River.