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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Tower Fire closure lifted, but some roads, trails still blocked

The closure area for the Tower Fire northeast of Newport was reduced on Oct. 6, 2015. (U.S. Forest Service)
The closure area for the Tower Fire northeast of Newport was reduced on Oct. 6, 2015. (U.S. Forest Service)

WILDFIRES -- As fall rains help extinguish the last of the Tower Fire across the Washington-Idaho border between the Pend Oreille and Priest River drainages, the Idaho Panhandle National Forest is lifting area closures but keeping road and trail closures in place.

Keeping roads and trail closed for public safety will continue to block the public out of some areas, including hunters heading out for the opening of Washington's modern rifle elk season this weekend.

Colville National Forest staff in the Newport Ranger District say area closures on the Washington side of the stateline are still in place and no decision has been made to open the area or the roads as of today.

"Although the fire is out in most areas, dangerous conditions remain due to falling trees and unstable soils," said a statement released today by District Ranger Tim Knight and Forest Supervisor Mary Farnsworth.

"Work is underway to remove hazardous trees and improve soil stability in some areas, but until safety concerns are fully addressed the following roads and trails remain closed:

  • Road 305 south and west of private property boundaries
  • Road 659, at the junction with Road 1108, west to the Colville National Forest Boundary
  • Road 1089 and all associated spurs, beginning at the junction with Road 659
  • Road 1075 and all associated spurs, beginning at the junction with Road 312
  • Road 312, beginning at the junction with Road 1107 extending west to the Colville National Forest Boundary. This also closes Forest Road 1076 and all associated spurs.
  • Road 1107 and all associated spurs, beginning at the junction with Road 219 and extending west to the Colville National Forest boundary.
  • Trails 197 and 164 are closed for their entire length.

These closures will remain in place until the areas are determined to be safe for public access.

Info: Priest lake Ranger District, (208) 443-2512.



Rich Landers
Rich Landers joined The Spokesman-Review in 1977. He is the Outdoors editor for the Sports Department writing and photographing stories about hiking, hunting, fishing, boating, conservation, nature and wildlife and related topics.

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