Fires

Idaho 21 near Pioneer Fire reopening; evacuations less likely

Satellite view shows growth of Pioneer Fire

As of Aug. 8, the Pioneer Fire near Lowman, Idaho, had consumed about 64,000 acres. This satellite view shows the growth of the smoke plume since the fire started July 18.
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As of Aug. 8, the Pioneer Fire near Lowman, Idaho, had consumed about 64,000 acres. This satellite view shows the growth of the smoke plume since the fire started July 18.

The Boise County Sheriff's evacuation notice will be reduced Tuesday morning from Level 2 -- voluntary but highly recommended -- to the lowest category, Level 1, the Boise National Forest reported Monday.

In Level 1, residents are asked to monitor emergency information and be ready to evacuate if the need increases. residents of Lowman must stay alert since the threat of wildfire is still present.

"Residents of Lowman must stay alert since the threat of wildfire is still present," the Forest Service news release stated.

Also at 9 a.m. Tuesday, Idaho 21 will reopen between Idaho City and Lowman, restoring a major route into and out of Lowman, according to the news release. All portions of the Pioneer Fire adjacent to Idaho 21 have been contained, but motorists should expect to see smoke and even small flames in some areas that were blackened by the fire, the Forest Service reports.

Drivers are asked to use caution when driving through areas of smoke as it may significantly reduce visibility. Also, drivers need to be aware that some trees with weakened root systems may fall and block the road, especially when winds are strong.

The highway between Idaho City and Lowman will experience heavier than usual traffic, including fire crews, for several weeks or until the Pioneer Fire is contained, officials said.

Farther along Idaho 21, drivers may experience delays between Lowman and Stanley due to the Dry Creek Fire.

Highway 17 (Banks-Lowman Road) will remain closed until further notice between Lowman and the Danskin Boat Launch, officials said. All Forest service roads within the Boise National Forest area closure also remain closed.

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