Interagency crews locate small roadside fire

Teton Interagency fire responders searched for, discovered, and controlled a vehicle-ignited wildfire on the National Elk Refuge on Wednesday morning, July 12.


July 12, 2017 (NER 17-15)

Teton Interagency fire responders searched for, discovered, and controlled a vehicle-ignited wildfire on the National Elk Refuge on Wednesday morning, July 12.

Teton Interagency Dispatch Center received a report of a fire located north of Fish Hatchery Hill and south of the entrance sign and pullout welcoming visitors to Grand Teton National Park. Initial responders included interagency personnel from both Grand Teton National Park and the Bridger-Teton National Forest. They were unable to locate the fire on their patrol through the area.

The same searchers interviewed the driver of a disabled truck parked near the Gros Ventre River and learned the truck had lost a drive train. The vehicle part was located across from Warm Springs Road on the east side of Highway 89. A smoldering fire, less than a tenth of an acre, had started by the heat from the drive train and burned through grass thatch and sagebrush. The vegetation was green enough, however, that the fire spread stopped when the wind died down.

The fire was named the Warm Springs Fire and called in as controlled at 1:30 pm, two hours after it was discovered.

The ignition serves as an important reminder that fire conditions are changing, transitioning into the summer drying period. The current fire danger is rated at moderate. When the fire danger is moderate, a fire start in open, dry grassland can burn and spread quickly on windy days.

Area residents and visitors can report a wildfire or smoke by calling (307) 739.3630.