The Indian Fire started mid-day Thursday, June 14 in Pine Cove. The U.S. Forest Service, with help from Cal Fire and Idyllwild Fire Department, kept the burn to 1.25 acres and controlled before dinner. The Incident Commander was Forest Service Battalion Chief Matt Ahearn. Photo by Steven King

Lookout tower spots all of them

Thursday, June 14, was a busy day for local firefighters and for lookouts at the Tahquitz Peak lookout tower. They called in the first reports for three different fires that day, according to Zach Behrens, San Bernardino National Forest public information officer.

Shortly before noon, smoke was seen just west of Saunders Meadows Road, south of the Transfer Station. Rapid response from Idyllwild Fire Department, the U.S. Forest Service and Cal Fire kept the fire area to less than half an acre.

Then about 1:15 p.m., the Forest Service reported another fire in Pine Cove. The Indian Fire was held to 1.25 acres, Behrens reported.

The same agencies responded to this fire, too. The Keenwild helicopter collected water from Idyllwild Water District’s Foster Lake to drop on the fire.

Later in the day, at about 5 p.m., a much larger (about 20 acres) fire, the Bridle Fire, was contained and controlled by Friday morning. This one was in the Aguanga area.

The response included 170 firefighters, 26 engines, but no air attack. Engines from Cal Fire San Diego, Hemet and Murrieta responded to this ignition.

Just about lunchtime, the Tahquitz Lookout Tower spotted smoke in Idyllwild near the Transfer Station. Rapid responses from all local fire agencies, especially Idyllwild Fire Department, kept the fire to less than an acre. The Incident Commander was Forest Service Battalion Chief Chris Fogle.
Photo by Steven King