Start Date: July 27, 2012
Current Size: 91,954 acres Containment: 3%
Location: Approx. 18 miles northwest of Stanley, Idaho
Jurisdiction: USDA Forest Service, Intermountain Region, Salmon-Challis National Forest
Resources on the fire: 477 personnel, including 5 hand crews, 27 engines, 5 helicopters
Community Meeting: A meeting is planned at the Challis Middle School Auditorium.7:00pm, Monday August 20.
Forecast: A weak trough of low pressure will bring clouds and isolated showers as well as dry thunderstorms today. There is a Red Flag Warning in effect due to dry lightning. The temperature will be in the low 80s with humidity around 20 percent. The Haines Index will be a 4.
Remarks: Work on the Bench Fire continued with 85 percent containment. Firefighters hope to completely contain the fire by the end of the day. The Halstead fire was very active Saturday from the old 2006 Potato Mountain burn area all the way to the Vanity Lakes area which is the whole southern flank of the fire. The fire behavior did change in the Potato Mountain area because the fuel was different and that factor took away a lot of the intensity that the fire had. The fire has paralleled the Basin Butte Road and is spotting or throwing embers into unburned areas in the east fork of Valley Creek.
Homeowner Preparedness: For suggestions on how to prepare around your home for wildfires visit www.firewise.org
Closures: A large area around the Halstead fire is closed. For information on the closure area visit www.fs.usda.gov/sawtooth and www.fs.usda.gov/scnf . Know before you go. For a high resolution map of the closure area go to the Flickr site www.flickr.com/salmonchallisnf. The Bench Fire Closure is being lifted today.
The following CAMPGROUNDS are closed due to the fire closure: Beaver Creek, Lola Creek, Marsh Creek Transfer, O’Brien, Josephus Lake, and campgrounds along the Salmon River from Lower Stanley to Thompson Creek.
Air Quality: Ground level smoke was less thick but more widespread. The passing of a weak weather disturbance is predicted which should improve air quality for most of the area. Air quality will be significantly improved for Stanley and Challis. For more information on smoke, visit http://airquality.deq.idaho.gov/
Hwy 21 and Hwy 75 remain open within the closure area.
The Boundary Creek Road (FS 579) to the Middle Fork remains open.
Highway 21: A pilot car is operating from 7:00am-9:00pm on Banner Summit as a result of fire activity in the area of the Bench Fire.
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