Courtesy photo
A heavy air tanker makes a drop on the Paine Fire in the Duck Creek Basin on Wednesday.

Firefighters overnight on Tuesday made good progress toward securing the southern and western edges of the Paine Fire in Duck Creek Basin, about 15 miles northeast of Ely. On Wednesday, hand crews with aerial support worked to secure and tie in the northern and eastern flanks of the fire.

The approximately 727-acre fire is burning on Forest Service and public lands north of Timber Creek. It is consuming primary greater sage grouse habitat and burning into the High Schells Wilderness. Primary fuels are grass, brush, pinion-juniper, mountain mahogany and white fir.

Firefighters are implementing a full suppression strategy and anticipate holding the fire at the Timber Creek drainage. The Timber Creek Campground is not threatened at this time. The road to the campground is closed.

Firefighter and public safety are the top priority. The public is advised to be aware of an increased presence of fire vehicle traffic in the area.

The fire was first reported at about 2:15 p.m., Tuesday, July 17. The cause of the fire is undetermined. The estimated containment date is Saturday, July 21.

Assisting the Bureau of Land Management are the Forest Service and White Pine Fire Protection District.