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HAILEY - Forest managers have closed a large area of land west of Ketchum for the Beaver Creek Fire.

Parts of the Ketchum Ranger District and Sawtooth National Recreaction Area have been closed, with exclusions including Bald Mountain and some campgrounds. All roads and trails in that area are closed, though Highway 75 remains open.

An infrared mapping flight showed the fire had increased to 32,000 acres as of Monday night, more than 10,000 acres larger than Sunday night's estimate. 

The fire has grown to the north and now is burning about a mile south of the space between Baker and Big peaks west of Ketchum, said fire public information officer Traci Weaver.

The area has escaped the red flag warning in place to the north and east, Weaver said, but fire could receive some outflow winds from the north which could increase fire activity.

The Haines Index, which indicates the potential for fire growth, is a level 5 out of 6 today, Weaver said. The index will be at its highest level Wednesday and Friday.

Crews have made progress containing the blaze on its south side, and the outlook for the west side is pretty good, Weaver said. A hot shot crew is headed to the east side of the fire to work on putting in a fire line to halt progress in that direction.

"There are more crews ordered," she said. "We're just hoping we can fill the orders with so may fires going on."

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About 340 personnel are assigned to the fire.

Meetings are planned 7 p.m. Tuesday at Ketchum City Hall and at Legion Hall in Fairfield. 

A meeting in Hailey is set for 7 p.m. Wednesday at the Wood River High School Performing Arts Center.


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