Wildfire near Redfish Lake forces evacuation of campers, lodge

Credit: Audra Clegg / First Person

Wildfire near Redfish Lake forces evacuation of campers, lodge


by KTVB.COM & Associated Press


Posted on July 23, 2013 at 9:20 AM

Updated Wednesday, Jul 24 at 4:25 PM

Red Fish Lake Fire

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STANLEY -- Idaho wildfire managers are bringing in more personnel and equipment to battle the 210 Fire south of Stanley.

The fire sparked Monday afternoon and burned less than a square mile, or roughly 300 acres of lodgepole pine and brush. Firefighters say it started alongside a small national forest road, just off State Highway 75 near the entrance to Redfish Lake Lodge.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

Nearby campers and guests at the historic Red Fish Lake  Lodge were forced to evacuated on Monday after the fire broke out. At one point, the fire burned to the border of a state fish hatchery and a nearby subdivision, but no buildings or homes were damaged.

Fire spokesperson Linda Steinhaus says the lodge and campgrounds were not immediately threatened.


State Highway 75 was briefly closed near the lodge due to smoke and flames, but is now reopened with pilot cars guiding traffic through the smoke.

Fire Incident Commander Matt Filbert told KTVB that campers won't likely be allowed back into the area for several days.

"If we get a good handle on this today, we will assess that for tomorrow, or likely the following day," Filbert said.

Guests at Redfish Lake Lodge are also under a temporary evacuation by the U.S. Forest Service. The lodge hopes to reopen at some point Tuesday.


At least one hotshot crew conducted a burn out operation on the east side of Redfish Lake Lodge Road, according to Filbert.

"We did that to stop the fire from attempting to cross Redfish Lake Creek, and/or the river," Filbert said.

The efforts appear to be working, as Filbert said the fire's growth was halted overnight.

More than 250 firefighters are expected to fight the fire on Tuesday and Wednesday. Helicopters and air tankers will be making water and fire retardant drops, according to the Forest Service.

Officials say a Type II Regional Incident Management Team is expected to take over firefighting efforts at some point on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, Filbert says he expects very little impact to other lakes and mountain trails in the area.

The smoke in the valley is expected to lift Tuesday morning.