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Idaho Fire Incident Map

Friday, August 12, 2016

08/12/2016 Idaho DEQ Smoke Forecast

Updated 10am MDT Friday, August 12, 2016

Valid through Noon MDT Monday, August 15, 2016

Smoke Outlook

Air quality is forecast to continue to remain in the Good to Moderate air quality category across the state today.  All DEQ monitors are currently reading in the GOOD category this morning except for Garden Valley, Nampa, and Boise which are currently reading in the MODERATE category.

Today will continue to experience warming temperatures as an upper level ridge approaches from the west.  Wind speeds will be in the 5-15 mph range from the west-northwest with northwest to northeast winds over the Camas Prairie and southwest winds over the Upper Snake River Plain and Purcell Trench.  Wind directions over northern Idaho will be generally will be from the west-northwest.  Wind speeds at the surface will range from 10-15 mph in southern Idaho and 2-8 mph in northern Idaho.  Mixing heights will range from 2,000 feet AGL to 9,000 feet AGL.  Similar weather conditions this weekend; however, some minor disturbances will pass through Idaho Saturday and Sunday.  Both are expected to be weak and will only bring a slight chance for isolated showers at higher elevations.  The ridge will move out of the area on Saturday as the upper level disturbances approach.  By Monday, a flat ridge will establish.

Smoke impacts today are expected to continue to be local in nature.  Smoke is expected to impact communities near active fires with morning drainage into the Upper Treasure Valley, Stanley region, and Central Idaho Mountains.  Transport this afternoon will be to the southeast.  This evening will see nocturnal drainage down the Boise-Mores into the Lower Snake River Plain.  The Camas Prairie (Fairfield) will see increased drainage smoke as well which will impact the early morning.  Tomorrow will see limited impacts across the Upper Treasure Valley in the morning and Northern Magic Valley before clearing to the northeast in the afternoon.  Expect a similar pattern through the weekend with morning impacts in the Upper Treasure Valley and Northern Magic Valley with clearing in the afternoon to the northeast.

DEQ Air Quality Forecast and Cautions:
  • None
View DEQ near-real time monitoring at:

The USFS installed monitors near Stanley, Idaho and Lowman, Idaho.  Idaho DEQ has installed temporary monitors in Fairfield and Boise (Garden City), Idaho. The information can be found at
·         Stanley, ID monitor is Stanley-Idaho 75
·         Lowman, ID monitor is Lowman-Jolene Drive
·         Fairfield, ID monitor is Fairfield-Soldier Road
·         Boise, ID monitor is Garden City-Alworth Street

Smoke forecasts are dependent on predicted fire growth and weather.  If conditions change unexpectedly, impacts could occur.  When visibility starts to go below 5 miles, sensitive groups should minimize outdoor activities.  Everyone else should minimize prolonged or physical activity outdoors.  Visit the Idaho Smoke Blog for more information at

Your eyes are your best tools to determine if it’s safe to be outside.  Even if you smell smoke, the air quality may still be good. 

AQI Category
Visibility (miles)
Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups
1½  -2¾
Very Unhealthy
Less than 1

How to estimate air quality based on visibility for areas without an air quality monitor or airport visibility estimate:

a. Face away from the sun.
b. Determine the limit of your visible range by looking for targets at known distances (miles).
c. Visible range is when an object you can easily see in the distance disappears.
d. Use the visibility values above to determine the local wildfire smoke category.