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Stateline Complex

Unit Information

Idaho Panhandle National Forest
U.S. Forest Service
3232 West Nursery Road
Coeur d'Alene, ID 83815

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Fire Closures Reduced Across the Idaho Panhandle

Stateline Complex Wildfire
News – 8/31/2021

Fire Closures Reduced Across the Idaho Panhandle

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, August 31, 2021

Recent rain and cooler temperatures have helped firefighters to get the upper hand in battling multiple large wildfires ignited by lightning storms that passed over the Idaho Panhandle National Forests in early July. Stage II Fire Restrictions have been lifted and, where safe, area closures are being reduced to restore public access for hunting and other recreation activities.  Previous closure orders are being rescinded and new closure orders are being issued to identify smaller areas on three major Fire Complexes on the IPNF:

·       Stateline Complex:  Effective August 30, closures in the area of the Stateline Complex have been lifted with the exception of an area surrounding the Tumbledown Fire.  A portion of the St. Joe River Road (Highway 50) between mileposts 61-75 remains closed, as does the fire area and several roads within it. 

·       Trestle Creek Complex:  Effective August 28, closures in the area of the Trestle Creek Complex have been reduced, opening lands north of Lunch Peak (Road 1091 is still closed), east of Lightning Creek Road 419, and south of Wellington Road 489.  Trails in the area remain closed except for Trail 444, which is open for public access.

·       Character Complex:  Effective August 30, area closures associated with the fires within the Character Complex (Deceitful and Prichard Fire) have been reduced to as close to the fire footprint as practicable.  Suppression work continues on the active, northeast portion of the fire, and suppression repair is underway on contained portions of the fire. All through-roads have been reopened, to include Dobson and Kings Passes.

Closures are still necessary in areas affected by high fire severity, falling snags and debris, or unstable areas.  Assessment and repair of fire damage may also be ongoing. 

Specific closure area location information for the Idaho Panhandle National Forests, including maps, are posted on the IPNF Alerts & Notices web page (https://www.fs.usdalgov/alerts/ipnf/alerts-notices); statewide information is provided on the Idaho Department of Fish and Game’s Fire Map web page (https://idfg.idaho.gov/ifwis/maps/realtime/fire/). 

In the opened areas, the public should be prepared to meet heavy equipment and other fire traffic on roads.  Whether driving or walking, watch for rolling logs, rock or other falling debris.  Windy days are especially dangerous; even trees that look healthy can be at risk of falling due to damaged root systems and fire-loosened soils. When tree stumps or roots burn, cavities can be left below the surface that are not readily visible.  Stepping into such ash pits can result in a twisted ankle or burned skin.  Smoke can affect visibility and make breathing difficult, and could be an indicator of renewed burning - just a slight breeze can fan a small ember back into flame.

“While fire activity has slowed down a bit, fuel conditions remain very dry, fire danger remains HIGH and there is still potential for large fire growth or new fires to emerge,” said Patrick Lair, Public Affairs Officer for the Idaho Panhandle National Forests. New closure orders may go into effect on short notice if fire activity increases, weather conditions worsen, and/or suppression resources become limited. Closure orders are in effect until they are no longer needed, and the public is notified that they have been rescinded.

Unless specifically exempted, the public is urged to stay away from closed areas. Violation of a closure order can put the safety of the public or firefighters at risk and is punishable by $5,000 for an individual or $10,000 for an organization, or imprisonment for not more than six months, or both.

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