Rapidly moving lightning-caused fires are challenged firefighters this afternoon. Several fires that burned together located south of the South Fork of the Boise River are now being called the Pony Complex. Fires that burned together located north of the South Fork of the Boise River are being called the Elk Complex. Managers are estimating 30,000 acres have burned on both sides of the river.
The Elk Complex estimated at 20,000 acres is moving north and northwest towards Prairie. Fires on the Pony Complex estimated at 11,000 acres are moving in a north, northeast direction towards Bennett Mountain Road. Smoke from the fires is moving in a north, northwest direction. Heavy smoke is being reported in Garden Valley, Idaho City and the upper Boise Foothills.
Road closures now in place include:
· Blacks Creek Road off I-84 at the Ada/Elmore County Line
· Indian Creek Road off I-84 at exit 71
· Pine/Featherville Road off Hwy 20 (should be a short term closure and is being initiated by Elmore County Sheriff to facilitate evacuations)
· Anderson Ranch Dam south on the Dixie Creek Cut-off to Hwy 20
· Prairie Road/Cow Creek Road heading north from Hwy 20
Due to extreme fire behavior, evacuations have been issued by the Elmore County sheriff’s office for:
· The community of Prairie;
· From Anderson Dam Reservoir up Fall Creek Road to Ice Springs Campground then east to Lester Creek Guard Station;
· Danskin and Bennett Mountain fire lookouts.
At this time, the area East of Lester Creek Guard Station still remains open to the public.
The American Red Cross has opened an evacuation shelter at the Elk’s Lodge in Mt. Home for any resident that has been displaced due to the fire.
Other Fires burning:
The Mile Marker 99 and Air fires have been contained and a majority of the fires burning on the Boise National Forest have been staffed with no containment issues at this time.
The Pilot Fire, located 10 miles east of Garden Valley, has burned approximately 5 acres and is estimated to be 50 percent contained.
Stage I fire restrictions remain in effect which prohibit using a campfire outside of an agency designated recreation site until further notice. For more information, please visit www.blm.gov/id.