21-09-15 Jakes Gulch courtesy.jpg

Air resources, including the Boise Hot Shots and the Sawtooth Hot Shots, were working on shoring up the contingency line along the northern and southern edges of the Jakes Gulch Fire yesterday.

The Jakes Gulch Fire that ignited near Alturas Lake on Sept. 5 grew about 130 acres between Friday and Tuesday, spurring increased efforts to protect private and Forest Service infrastructure around high-use campgrounds.

More than 210 firefighters, six helicopters and two planes are working on the 510-acre blaze, which stood at about 5% containment on Tuesday, according to BLM Fire Information Officer Ryan Berlin.

Forecasts on Tuesday indicated very low relative humidity for the rest of the week and a high chance of a “significant wind event” beginning tonight and heading into Thursday, Berlin said.

Hikers and hunters are asked to stay out of the Jake’s Gulch Fire closure area, which is bounded by state Highway 75 and Beaver Creek Road to the east, Cabin Creek Road to the north, Mattingly Peak to the west and NF-888 to the south.

Closed areas around Alturas Lake include Cabin Creek Trailhead, Perkins Lake, Alturas Lake, Smokey Bear Alturas Campground, North Shore Alturas Campground, Alturas Inlet Group Picnic Area B and about six miles of the Idaho Centennial Trail.

Believed to be human-caused, the Jakes Gulch Fire was considered 10% contained on Thursday, Sept. 9, but containment fell as the burn expanded southwest toward the North Fork of Ross Fork.

Heavy dead and down fuels have been feeding the fire, which continues to consume lodgepole pine, subalpine fir and Douglas fir stands in steep and mostly inaccessible terrain in the Sawtooth National Forest.

Full containment of the Jakes Gulch Fire is expected by Sept. 20.

Email the writer: ejones@mtexpress.com

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