Alder Creek, Trail Creek, and Christensen Fire Updates 08/31/2021

TRAIL CREEK

Location: 20 miles West of Wisdom

Star t date: July 8, 2021

Size: 39,405 acres (IR mapping-8/30)

Percent Complete: 58%

Cause: Lightning

Total personnel: 218


TRAIL CREEK FIRE:

The fire continues to be active in the Three Mile Creek, Nez Perce, and Salix Creek areas. While the areas are experiencing an increase in activity, the majority of growth is interior

to the fire and not increasing in acreage outside the fire perimeter. Helicopters will be

available to assist ground crew with buckets drops as needed. Crews are beginning the

process of removing excess water-handling equipment on the Highway 93 corridor. They

will work southward along Highway 93 but leave all water-handling equipment in tact in

Gibbonsville. Crews continue to implement the suppression repair plan, in consultation

with agency resource advisors. National Guard crews are assisting with logistics and

suppression repair operations until tomorrow.



ALDER CREEK

Location: 7 miles west of Wise River

Star t date: July 8, 2021

Size: 14,158 acres (IR mapping-8/30)

Percent Complete: 24%

Cause: Lightning

Total personnel: 176


ALDER CREEK FIRE:

Fire activity in the Teddy Creek area picked up in the evening hours, with visible flame

and smoke observed. This activity is interior to the perimeter and does not cause concern

or threat to the line. Firefighters continue to backhaul excess water-handling equipment

along the Pioneer Scenic Byway, monitor areas of heat on the fire, and implement

suppression repair. On the west side of the Pioneer Scenic Byway, heavy equipment will

work on suppression repair. Crews continue to monitor the large fuels smoldering in the

interior of the fire; no significant fire growth is expected.



CHRISTENSEN

Location:12 miles west of Wise River

Star t date: July 16, 2021

Size: 11,161 acres (IR mapping-8/30)

Percent Complete: 20%

Cause: Lightning

Total personnel: 12


CHRISTENSEN FIRE:

Heavy equipment completed road repairs on Calvert Road Loop and removed all but six

water pumps from the Bryant Creek area. Scattered heat and visible smoke remains in the

Trident Peak area, where pockets of fuel continue to burn out within the perimeter. The

fire is expected to continue slowly backing into Bryant Creek under current conditions.



TODAY'S WEATHER/FIRE BEHAVIOR:

Drift smoke from others fires in the region may provide some shading in the morning

hours. Temperatures are expected to be in the upper 70s with relative humidity in the

mid-teens. Today's warm and dry conditions will be similar to yesterday, with winds

picking up earlier and gusting stronger. Sustained winds of 10-15 mph are expected

starting at about 11am with gusts to 25 mph and even 30 mph in the Trident Peak area.


Another night of poor relative humidity recovery will result in an earlier and longer burn

period. The Three Mile Creek area continues to be the most active portion of the fire.

Isolated tree torching and short uphill runs are expected in the Three Mile Creek area,

Bryant Creek area and Trident Peak area. Fire behavior analysts do not expect movement

of the fire to the west, given the steep terrain and predicted winds.


The effects of the southwest winds vary by elevation and aspect. Areas with scattered heat

in Salix Creek, Gory Creek, and Teddy Creek continue to burn out heavy fuels in the

fires' interiors. These areas are sheltered from the winds and should burn back onto

already burned portions of the fire. The fire is having a hard time becoming established

enough to move around; no significant fire growth is expected.



SAFETY:

Highway 43 and the Pioneer Scenic Byway are open to through traffic. Slow down and

stay alert for firefighting equipment and vehicles, smoke, and downed trees. Motorists

should also watch for bicyclists, hikers, and vehicles operating at slower speeds.


FIRE RESTRICTIONS:

Public lands in southwest Montana and central Idaho are in varying stages of fire

restrictions. Check mtfireinfo.org and idahofireinfo.com for the latest information.


CLOSURES:

Portions of the Continental Divide Trail remain closed.

The Big Hole National Battlefield is closed until further notice.

May Creek Campground is closed.

Closure orders remain in effect on the Beaverhead-Deerlodge and Salmon-Challis

National Forests. Forest officials are currently modifying closures boundaries.





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