ELEVEN MILE FIRE UPDATE August 30, 2015 – 8 a.m.
Current Situation: The Elevenmile Fire was reported at 2 p.m. on August 24th in the Elevenmile drainage on the Challis-Yankee Fork Ranger District of the Salmon-Challis National Forest, 17 miles west of Challis, Idaho. The fire is burning in an area that is difficult to access for firefighters in very dense standing and dead lodgepole pine. Due to more accurate mapping the fire has burned a total of 9,641 acres as of last night. The anticipated growth we expected from yesterday’s wind event was moderated by cloud cover and higher humidity’s from the passing cold front. About 70 firefighters will be flown into the Meadows Spike Base this morning on the southern edge of the fire to allow for more efficient access to begin suppression efforts in that area. In the NE corner, where most of the resources are focused, crews have been building control lines to tie in Challis Creek with the old Lodgepole Fire as a contingency to protect the Mosquito Flat area. In Bayhorse and Garden Creek, structure assessments and defense planning continue with the addition of crews beginning to prepare them just in case the fire gets close. The Bayhorse Ghost Town, Dredge and Custer Historical sites are still open to the public.
The fire experienced moderate fire behavior yesterday with no major runs. Most growth was to the North and NW towards the wilderness, the Lodgepole Fire of ‘13 and Shower Bath Fire of ’07.
Immediate objectives of the fire are to keep residents of Challis and surrounding area informed using current and accurate fire information. Firefighters will work to minimize impacts to Garden Creek municipal watershed and protect structures along the Custer Motorway.
Due to the location, thick timber and limited access to the fire area, this fire is most likely to be of long duration. Like many fires in this area, it will need Mother Nature’s assistance to put out.
Weather: The weather is expected to continue to offer firefighters relief with another cold front moving in later today offering a chance of rain and cooler temperatures.
Public Safety: Visitors to historic sites please obey posted speed limits. There will be increased fire vehicle traffic. Folks traveling the Custer Motorway need to be aware a grader work being conducted there.
Area Fire Closures: An Emergency Area Closure is in effect and includes the following roads, campgrounds and all areas within to provide protection to forest visitors. The following roads are closed: Bayhorse Road (#40051); Trealor Creek Road (#40045); Custer Motor Way (#40070) at Five Mile Creek & Junction with Garden Creek Road (#400901); Kinnikinic Creek Road (#40053); Mill Creek Campground; Mosquito Flat Campground.
Sleeping Deer Road (#40086) is OPEN
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