Boise National Forest

Jeff Myers / Flickr

Boise National Forest officials are warning drivers to stay off snow-covered forest roads.

Boise National Forest spokesman David Olson says drivers are finding lower elevations are clear, until they start climbing higher into the forest.

wildfires, highway 20, road closure
Google Maps

UPDATE 3:27 p.m.: U.S. Highway 20 has reopened after closing for much of the day. BLM fire managers are still working to contain several fires in the area.

ORIGINAL POST: A 56-mile stretch of U.S. Highway 20 is closed north of Mountain Home after lighting sparked several fires last night. The Bureau of Land Management reports the Milemarker 111 fire has burned about 12,000 acres, and is burning next to the highway. The road is closed from Mountain Home to 1st Street West in Fairfield, and it's not clear when the road will reopen.

Boise National Forest

The Boise National Forest has been a focal point of fire activity this year. The drought has increased the chance for extreme fires to act unpredictably. Sometimes, previously burned areas are the best way to stop the advance of these dangerous blazes – especially those that could endanger people and property.

The Ridge Fire is one of the blazes that’s benefited from previously burned areas. This fire has been burning for more than three weeks near the town of Lowman in the Boise National Forest.

Boise National Forest

Update, 5:00 AM Tuesday:  BLM officials now say crews hope to have the Fir Grove Fire contained by Tuesday evening.  The latest estimates of burned acreage now put the fire at approximately 7150 acres.  Initially, fire officials had estimated the fire's size at more than 8500 acres.

Original post:  Sunday afternoon, the Fir Grove Fire sprang up near Gooding, forcing the partial closure of Highway 46 and Highway 20.

Wildfires, Pine Creek Fire
Boise National Forest

Wildfires continued burning across southern and central Idaho over the weekend, with several new fires also igniting. 

The Ridge Fire north of Lowman in the Boise National Forest has now burned about 3,000 acres. Officials say it's 7 percent contained. Despite predictions Friday of significant growth, the fire did not grow Sunday.

Boise National Forest

Eight new fires started after a storm rumbled through the Boise National Forest Tuesday night. More than 4,000 lighting strikes were reported. The largest lightning-caused fire had reportedly burned 150 acres by this morning. Crews were ready for new starts after a red flag warning went into effect.

Nearby, the Pine Creek Fire has claimed about 1,500 acres since it started on Monday afternoon. The blaze is about 10 percent contained, with 240 firefighters at work.

Sadie Babits / Boise State Public Radio

Update 8:20 a.m.:  Fire managers said Tuesday morning the Pine Creek Fire has now burned 800 acres northeast of Boise.  200 people are working the fire, which officials say has a "high" growth potential.  With lightning in the forecast, firefighters are bracing for more new fires in the region.  The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

oatsy40 / Flickr Creative Commons

With Thanksgiving behind us many people are thinking about getting a Christmas tree. Thousands of Idahoans still head to the woods every year to cut their own trees. Permits are now on sale to harvest trees in the state’s ten national forests.

Boise National Forest

Update: August 29, 2012

The Idaho state veterinarian, Mark Drew, says the injured bear cub needs more help than previously thought.  The cub, nicknamed Boo Boo, was burned in the Mustang Fire near Salmon.  All four of his paws were severely burned. 

Trinity Ridge Fire Brings Community Together

Aug 17, 2012
Charity Parks / Inciweb

Since Tuesday, residents of the small towns of Featherville and Pine gather together each evening to talk about the Trinity Ridge Fire, burning near their homes.  At these meetings, fire officials provide status updates on the 72-thousand acre blaze.

These meetings help prepare residents for potential evacuations.  They talk about what’s important to pack, as well as how to use defensible land around their homes.  Officials recommend raking up pine needles and removing wood piles.

Boise National Forest

Residents of Pine and Featherville were briefed today on the rapidly moving Trinity Ridge Fire.  The fire expanded yesterday and moved about five miles away from Featherville. 

David Olson with the Boise National Forest says the residents were told to prepare for an evacuation that could come at any time. "The whole focus right now is to inform the community where the fire is, what it potentially might do and have them ready to leave when or if the order comes.”

Update: Highway 55 Reopens

Aug 10, 2012

Updated: 5:30 p.m. August 10, 2012

Idaho Highway 55 near Banks is back open without restrictions. The Idaho Transportation Department urges drivers to use caution and watch for falling rock.  The road, between Gardena and Smith Ferry (milepost 75-97) re-opened this afternoon.

Updated: 8:30 a.m. August 10, 2012

Update: Fire Sparks Evacuations Near Atlanta

Aug 8, 2012
Boise National Forest

Updated: 7:45 a.m. August 9, 2012

Evacuations remain in place this morning for people living in Rocky Bar, Dutch Creek and Swanholm. That's due to the Trinity Ridge fire which is now at more than 23,000 acres. At eight percent containment, 406 people are working to build new fire line today. 

Updated: 6:15 p.m. August 8, 2012