The South Slope Fire that threatened several homes near Freezeout Hill Thursday night has been contained and is expected to be under full control Friday night, U.S. Bureau of Land Management authorities reported midday Friday.
But the MM43HWY52 Fire, about 6 miles north of Emmett, is still active on its north flank, the BLM reported. No containment or control estimates have been set yet for that fire.
By far the largest of the blazes, the North Highway 52 Fire is about 6 miles north of Emmett and was estimated at more than 10,000 acres by 10:30 a.m. Friday, “burning in rough terrain on Squaw Butte,” BLM public information officer Carrie Bilbao said.
It was reported about 12:30 p.m. near milepost 43 of Idaho 52 and grew rapidly amid grass and brush. The fire appears to have been caused by a large bird, possibly a hawk or eagle, on a power line, Bilbao said.
“It's given them a lot of problems because that rocky terrain,” Bilbao said.
Several structures were threatened by the fire, but protections were put in place, and by evening no evacuations or structural damages were expected. By 8 p.m. the fire was burning toward Spring Creek and crews were protecting structures in that area.
“The fire has switched directions a couple times,” Bilbao said.
About 165 people in various capacities are fighting the fire, Bilbao said, and equipment on the scene includes 11 engines, six bulldozers, three heavy air tankers, three single-engine air tankers and two helicopters.
The South Slope Fire was re-measured at 63 acres Friday, down from 150 acres, due to better mapping now that the flames are under control. Crews focused their efforts Thursday night on protecting several homes on the east side of the blaze from the fire’s path; no structures were damaged.
Another sizable brush fire hit Owyhee County on Thursday. The Griffy Fire was reported at about 9:30 a.m. about 4 miles north of Murphy, the BLM reported.
The fire quickly grew to about 242 acres; a range of ground and air resources kept it in check, according to a BLM news release. It was contained at 10 a.m. Friday, with full control expected by 6 p.m.
The Griffy Fire is believed to be human-caused and is under investigation, Bilbao said. There is considerable ATV traffic in the area, she said.
In the Boise Foothills, crews from the BLM, and Boise and Eagle fire departments fought a four-acre fire Thursday off Cartwright Road near the 1000 block of Ourada Ranch Road.
With temperatures expected in the triple digits for at least the next week, agencies anticipate that fire suppression will be difficult and urge people to be extra careful outdoors.