Leland Complex Fire Upate
Idaho Department of Lands
The Leland Complex Wildfire is comprised of two fires. The first is the Sand Mountain Fire, which is 2.5 miles east of Laird Park, Latah County, Idaho at 0% containment. The second is the Pine Creek Fire, located 2.5 miles east of Juliaetta, Idaho, currently 75% contained. There is about 180 emergency personnel working to contain this fire.
Sand Mountain Fire
Fire behavior yesterday was active with running and torching in heavy timber fuel types. Air resources continued to deliver water as ground forces worked tirelessly to build and reinforce fireline. Heavy equipment worked to open roadways to limit the ability of the fire to spot across the Big Sand Road and to connect natural fire breaks. Firefighting efforts have been successful in establishing an anchor point on the northwestern perimeter of the fire, keeping the fire south of Palouse River Road. High daytime temperatures and poor overnight humidity recoveries are leading to extreme fire conditions. Today fire managers anticipate an increase in fire activity as the inversion lifts and the smoke clears this afternoon.
Pine Creek Fire
Yesterday an unmanned aerial system (UAS) was flown taking infrared readings of the fire footprint to locate areas of heat so that firefighters could “seek and destroy”. This focused effort greatly increases the efficiency and efficacy of firefighting tactics. Today fire crews will continue mop-up and will monitor/patrol until declared out by the incident management team. Interior pockets of fuels will continue to produce smoke as they smolder and be visible from the highway 12 corridor.
Please respect closure orders; this includes roads, campgrounds, trails, OHV trails. Closures are for the safety of the public and our fire crews. Roads are tight, and there are many moving parts in a fire operation to keep track of. Please do not take away from the focus of fire crews by being someplace you should not!
Evacuations and Closures: Firefighter and public safety remain the number one priority. The public is asked to comply with all restrictions in place. The Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forests’ Palouse Ranger District has issued a forest closure order for the area around the Sand Mountain Fire- including Laird Park. Details of trail, road, and campground closures can be found here: https://www.fs.usda.gov/.../nezperceclearwater/notices/...
Temporary Flight Restrictions (TFR): There is a TFR in place for air space over the Leland Complex fires. Remember that temporary flight restrictions also apply to unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) or drones. If you Fly, We Can’t!
Cooperating Agencies: Idaho Dept of Lands, Nez Perce Tribe, USFS, Latah County Sheriff’s Office, Nez Perce County Sheriff’s Office, Nez Perce County FD, Potlatch VFD, Troy VFD, Deary VFD, Moscow VFD, Juilaetta VFD, Kendrick VFD, Genesee VFD, South Idaho Timber Protection Association.