Although high amounts of precipitation and seasonally low temperatures has kept fire activity to a minimum, crews have reported a slight increase in smoke activity as of August 21st. The area between the Black Bear and Salmon Forks Administrative sites has received rain in excess of 1.5" between August 9th and August 17th. Fire personnel have made great use of the recent reduction in fire activity, and have been working to clear and re-clear trails affected by the fire. The ever present snag hazard has limited their ability to work in certain areas and trails, however as conditions dictate efforts will continue to safely clear trails.
The low fire activity has also allowed for a reduction in the Snow Creek Fire Area Closure, primarily on the north side. Expedited travel is now allowed on the East Side South Fork Main Line Trail (#80) through the closure. Travelers on this section of trail are reminded that stopping, camping, and travel off the trail are still prohibited. Travel on the River also remains prohibited, but changes to the closure are expected soon. An update will be posted as soon as it becomes available.
The Snow Creek Fire begin during the night of August 2nd. Since then, crews from the Spotted Bear and Hungry Horse Ranger Districts as well as the Lewis and Clark National Forest have worked together to provide critical structure protection to historical, administrative work sites on the Spotted Bear Ranger District. Point protection activities consisted of structure wrapping and sprinkler system installation at the Black Bear and Salmon Forks Administrative sites, as well as the Big Salmon Pack Bridge and Mud Lake Lookout. During a favorable weather window, burnout operations at the Black Bear Administrative site were conducted during August 7th and 8th. During the first week of the fire, a large group of floaters who were unable to take alternative routes were escorted through the closure area by the river crew. The individual groups continued downstream once clear of the closure area. A coalition of employees from the Spotted Bear Ranger District including the front desk, river rangers, trail crew, and wilderness rangers along with permit administrators, outfitters, guides, and the general public have worked together since the start of the fire to get all individuals recreating in the impacted area out safely. This group effort is greatly appreciated as it has made rerouting, rescheduling, and safely escorting members of the public out of the closure area possible.
Official trail closures have been posted. Please contact the ranger station with any questions.