Idaho fire roundup: Crews battle blazes in Boise National Forest, BLM land

Three wildfires in and around the Boise National Forest continued to burn Thursday near Idaho City and Arrowrock Reservoir, but have seen minor activity.

Cooler temperatures, light winds and cloud cover aided firefighters on all three fires, according to a Boise National Forest news release.

The Grayback Fire, about 2 ½ miles south of Idaho City, is at about 12 acres, burning mid-slope in a densely forested area. Due to the close proximity of this fire to Idaho City and the amount of fuel surrounding the fire, it continues to be the highest priority fire for the Boise National Forest, officials said. No structures are threatened.

The Mores Fire near Pilot Peak grew slightly Wednesday and was estimated at 66 acres. Firefighters estimate it will take several days to fully control because it is burning at high elevation and has burned in a spotty fashion, leaving many patches of unburned fuel. Pilot Peak Road is closed from the junction of Idaho 21 to Colter Summit and Bear Run Road is closed from the junction of Forest trail 680 to the Pilot Peak Road. Forest trail 690 also is closed. No structures are threatened.

The Grape Fire was at about 175 acres Wednesday, burning in the steep terrain south of Arrowrock Reservoir, an area that was burned as part of the 1992 Foothill Fire. By Thursday it was down to about 80 acres, according to the Bureau of Land Management. No structures are threatened. But, there have been two minor injuries to firefighters working on the blaze: a sprained kneed and heat-related illness.

The northern part of the Boise National Forest, around Deadwood Reservoir, received lightning Wednesday afternoon, with more expected.

BLM Boise District firefighters contained two wildfires Wednesday evening, including the 1,800 acre Cold Fire that had earlier been predicted for containment Thursday.

The Cold Fire, caused by a Tuesday night lightning storm, burned approximately 11 miles northwest of Glenns Ferry in rough, rocky terrain designated as immportant sage grouse habitat. But rainfall slowed the fire's progression, and by Wednesday night crews were mopping up hot spots.

The Crane Fire broke out on BLM land in the Brown Gulch Area off Idaho 78 Wednesday morning. Sparked by a powerline, the fire also was contained Wednesday night.

Just west of the Idaho border, BLM crews battled several wildfires, including a 600-acre fire that spurred closing Interstate 84 in both directions between Ontario and Pendleton.