The 1,000-acre fire north of Arrowrock Dam that began Wednesday afternoon is still uncontained, but firefighters expect to have it under control by Saturday, according to the U.S. Forest Service.
The Deer Fire, which is located 12 miles northeast of Boise and 3 miles north of Arrowrock Dam, is being fought by ground crews getting support from aircraft, according to a Forest Service release.
“Fire crews made good progress building direct line with assistance from extensive aerial resources including two water scooper aircraft and helicopter bucket drops,” the release Friday said. “These aircraft have the ability for fast turnarounds in collecting and dropping water to cool hot spots.”
The lightning-caused blaze is located in the Mountain Home Ranger District of the Boise National Forest and is burning “critical winter range for wildlife,” according to the release.
The Forest Service asks motorists to use caution when traveling on the Arrowrock road (Forest System Road 268), which is near the fire. There are no road closures in effect.
On Thursday, a spokesperson for the Forest Service, Venetia Gempler, told the Idaho Statesman by email that “a home with outbuildings” was threatened by the fire.
On Friday, a second spokesperson, Linda Steinhaus, said that firefighters expect to control the fire before any structures burn.
“There’s structures still threatened but we are optimistic that we can get a hold of it,” Steinhaus said. “We’re looking at containment tomorrow.”
Stormy weather is expected in the Boise region this weekend, with around an inch of rain forecast in the area of the fire, according to the National Weather Service. Rainfall is expected in burned areas, too, which may cause flash flooding.
Crews fighting the fire have been using “point protection” tactics to defend private structures in the area, as well as digging lines on both of its flanks. There are five 20-person crews, five engines, two heavy airtankers, two water scoopers, four helicopters and two bulldozers working on the burn, the release said.
Motorists traveling to Atlanta should use Forest Road 327 (Granite/Rabbit Creek), the release said. Forest Road 384 (Edna Creek) is closed for construction.