Lightning sparks multiple fires in Salmon-Challis National Forest

Golden Trout Fire
Golden Trout Fire

Friday afternoon thunderstorms sparked five new blazes in the Salmon-Challis National Forest, according to a Forest Service press release.

The 3 Mile Fire, east of Anderson Mountain and north of Dahlonega Creek, was about 10-12 acres Saturday afternoon and threatened trail closures on the Continental Divide Trail, the release said. Eight firefighters and eight smokejumpers were fighting the blaze, with two crews en route to the fire. Because of its location, access was limited, officials said.

Access was also limited to the Golden Trout Fire, located southwest of Golden Trout Lake just inside of the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness, said Forest Service officials. That fire was about 10 acres on Saturday and also faced area trail closures.

Another fire in the Frank Church, called the Rattlesnake Creek Fire, burned east of the Middle Fork of the Salmon River, according to the release. Officials said the fire was about 15 acres and was “burning mid-slope and … smoking and smoldering.”

In addition, information was being gathered on two addition fires, one about one and a half miles north of the Mahoney Airstrip in the Frank Church, and another near Lost Packer Peak.

Forest Service officials said it’s likely more fires will be reported in the next few days due to the storms, and reminded the public that fireworks are never legal in the national forests.