NASA's Aqua satellite captured this image of Idaho's two large fires on August 10, 2013. The fires consist of the Pony Complex fire (left) and the Beaver Creek Complex fire (right). Both sets of fires were started by lightning strikes on Aug. 7 and 8.
The 119,543 acre Pony Complex is now 20 percent contained. Two cabins and an outbuilding in Syrup Creek were destroyed this morning as a result of the extreme fire behavior. Evacuations were ordered for the Syrup Canyon area. Multiple residences in Syrup Canyon and Miller Ranch were defended today. Evacuations were ordered including the community of Mayfield, Canyon Creek area and the Danskin and Bennett Mountain Lookouts. Livestock continued to be moved from out in front of the fire. Numerous road closures are in effect along with an area closure. Firefighters remained on the fire last night and will continue to construct direct fire lines while securing and protecting structures.
Beginning tomorrow, the Beaver Creek Fire (far right) and McCan Fire (middle fire) will be managed separately with the exception of helicopters which will be shared between the two fires, with a single helibase, which is now located near the command post east of Fairfield. The decision to split the management of the complex came as a result of the increased complexity of simultaneously managing two large fires in difficult terrain with limited access.
Gusty winds this morning pushed smoke from the Pony and Elk Complexes into the Camas Prairie. Around mid-afternoon, the inversion finally lifted, and fire activity increased as a result. Smoke will continue to impact the communities in the Camas Prairie and Wood River Valley.
McCan Fire is currently 18,189 acres. Firefighters are making very good progress in many areas of the fire. The southern portion of the fire has been contained and more containment is anticipated of the eastern portion of the fire by tomorrow evening. Fireline construction is now progressing into areas of the fire with challenging terrain and limited access.
Beaver Creek Fire is currently 18,681 acres. The fire continued to progress into the head of Warm Springs Creek, spotting across the Warm Springs Road. Resources continue to monitor the fire's position in Deer Creek, while also assessing the area for the necessary protection measures should the fire continue to move down drainage. Single Engine Air Tankers (SEATs) were used on the fire once again today.
This fire complex is currently 16% contained. The growth potential and terrain for these fires is extreme.
Explore further: Fires in Idaho