Crow Peak Wildfire 100 Percent Contained

Jul 5, 2016

The Crow Peak Wildfire was caused by lightning strikes on June 24. As of July 4, officials say the fire is 100 percent contained.
Credit Robert Cota / Boxelder Job Corps Crew 15 Fire Program Manager

Officials say the Crow Peak Wildfire is contained. On Independence Day, crews achieved 100 percent containment. The fire burned around 2,700 acres but no structures were lost. Officials say that almost 530,000 gallons of water were dropped on the fire and personnel worked a total of 32,000 hours. All evacuations in the area have been lifted but parts of Higgins Gulch Road, Crow Peak Bench Road and Crow Creek Road remain closed.

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The Crow Peak Wildfire near Spearfish is estimated to be 15 percent contained with 537 personnel continuing to fight the blaze.  Around 2600 acres have burned.

Officials say higher temperatures and lower humidity are forecast over the holiday weekend. Brett Haberstick is a public information officer on the Crow Peak Wildfire. He says crews are on alert for new ignitions springing up near the fire, but hopes a containment line is well established by the Fourth of July.

He stresses the fireworks ban in the city of Spearfish and Black Hills National Forest.

 “So hopefully that will help towards limiting any kind of ignition due to fireworks, but of course really urge safety and really be careful about where fireworks are lit and how they’re enjoyed,” says Haberstick.  

Haberstick says Higgins Gulch Road remains closed where backfiring operations are occurring but that he expects Crow Creek and Crow Peak Bench Road’s voluntary and pre-evacuation notices to be lifted in the coming days.
 

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The Crow Peak Wildfire near Spearfish has burned around 1350 acres.  On Wednesday crews expanded the fire lines from five to eight percent containment. Fire officials say there are now 512 personnel working the fire.

Shane Flickinger  is an information officer with the Crow Peak Wildfire. He says even though containment remains low, burnout operations have been successful on the north and northwest sides of the fire.
 
 “ They’re going to slowly work their way around down to the southeast, they want to push the fire in that direction away from the houses and stuff and onto forest land where there’s no structures or other values that will be at risk,” says Flickinger.
 
Flickinger says officials don’t know when fire crews will reach 100 percent containment but the weather looks good in the coming days.  He says the lower temperatures and higher humidity  forecast for the area could mean less fire activity.

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Crews have reached five percent containment on the Crow Peak Wildfire near Spearfish.  More than 1200 acres have burned, and nearly 500 people are working to fight the fire.
 
Brett Haberstick is a public information officer with the Crow Peak Wildfire. He says including ground work by firefighters, aircraft support has helped keep the fire somewhat under control.
 
 “We dropped 125,000 gallons of water yesterday, and so we have helicopters dropping water, single engine aircraft tankers dropping retardant, fixed wing aircraft dropping retardant so that’s been an effective strategy in kind of containing the fire to a degree, slowing it down and getting it into a position that will be really favorable for firefighters to work safely,” says Haberstick.
 
Fire officials say no structures have been lost, voluntary and pre-evacuation notices are in place along Crow Creek Road and Crow Peak Bench Road. Higgins Gulch Road is closed to the public. The Black Hills National Forest Service has temporarily closed the Crow Peak area. The weather is forecast for the mid to upper 80s throughout the remainder of the week. Storms are expected in the area tonight.