WASHINGTON COUNTY — The Woodhead Fire burning in the Payette National Forest near the border of Oregon and Idaho grew to 40,000 acres on Friday.
On Thursday, the blaze was estimated to be at 28,000 acres, but more accurate mapping has pinned the fire’s true size to be at 40,000 acres. The fire was at 14% containment mid-day Friday, with 188 personnel working on it.
The weekend’s forecast won’t bring any relief for the fire, which has already destroyed structures.
“Sunday, near record temperatures and stronger wind gusts are forecast. This may lead to another critical fire weather day, although conditions will not be near the historic wind event that happened Monday,” a press release from the Woodhead Fire’s incident management team said.
A number of residents have been evacuated from communities around Cambridge, Idaho, while the fire continues to rage in the area. Smoke has limited helicopter support for firefighters, who have been digging line and attempting to get ahead of the fire.
Evacuations are in place for Goodrich, Grizzly Creek, Cow Creek, Rush Creek, East Pine, Advent Gulch, Woodhead, West Fork, Seid Creek, Highway 71 corridor, and Mill Creek and Horse Flat Roads.
Residents may be escorted in to care for animals; contact the Washington County Sheriff’s Office at 208-414-2121. Evacuees may go to the Cambridge High School Gym. Additionally, the Red Cross is available at 800-853-2570 for assistance.
Highway 71 remains closed between Cambridge and the Oregon state line. The Payette National Forest will has issued an area closure for the safety of firefighters and the public. The full closure area description and map are available here.