26. March 2013 · Comments Off on Fire Lookouts of Southwestern Idaho · Categories: Current Events, Fun Rides

Southwestern Idaho’s Boise and Payette National forests have a long history of fires and fire lookouts.  Many of these lookouts are no longer used, but many are still in service.  All of them have great views and make interesting ride destinations.  There used to be hundreds of active fire lookouts in Idaho, now only a handful are staffed. Some still stand tall but idle. A few have been restored as alluring backcountry rentals. Others are slowly melting back into the mountains. Whatever their condition, lookouts are icons of the state, historic reminders of decades of fire fighting in Idaho.   Eyes of the Forest – Idaho’s Fire Lookouts (IPTV)  “Fire lookouts began as a matter of convenience. A likely tree and likely spot on a mountain top or a ridge top. They would put a ladder, either a wooden rung ladder or maybe they’d drive large spikes in the tree and climb it. In Idaho there were probably a hundred of these tree lookouts in the beginning. They went from there to more of them. A lot were built during the Civilian Conservation Corps era of the 1930s. The earliest cabins were cupola type cabins where you’d live on the ground floor and then a small cab upstairs or maybe just a tent camp. And they went from there to live-in style pole towers. They’d cut the poles on the mountain, sometimes 100 feet tall towers and they were livable towers. And that was the ideal set up because that way the lookout on duty could go about his daily activities and scan the horizon every ten minutes or so all day and night if necessary.”

Tripod Peak Lookout

Tripod Peak Lookout

Tripod Peak Lookout was established in 1921 with a 6′ wooden tower topped by a live-in cab, a 6′ L-4 tower was added in the 1930’s, with a concrete base added in 1956. The present 2-story R-6 flat cab, built in 1977, has been staffed by the Southern Idaho Timber Protective Association.  Elevation 8086′
Miners Peak Lookout

Miners Peak Lookout

Miners Peak Lookout was established in 1948 with a gable-roofed L-4 cab salvaged from Krassel Knob and Teapot Dome lookouts, the present 2-story log hip-roofed cab, built in 1989?, is staffed in the summer.  Elevation 7810′
Peck Mountain

Peck Mountain

Peck Mountain was established in 1919, a 30′ tree w/ cab and frame cabin living quarters were built. A 45′ steel Aermotor tower, built in 1935, was removed in 2007. An accompanying R-4 ground cab was used for living quarters. The site is listed on the National Historic Lookout Register.  Elevation 5200′
Gold Fork Lookout

Gold Fork Lookout

Gold Fork Lookout established in the 1920s with a 6×6′ log platform atop a rock 1.5 miles east at 8165′ and a log cabin in a meadow 1 mile southwest, an L-4 cab was constructed in 1933. It was moved to 2 miles east of Cascade for private use in 1988.  Elevation 7790′

 

To see other lookout and their locations visit the South Western Idaho Firelookout.com map!

Fire Lookout Map

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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