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The Grangeville Environment

Grangeville sits at 3,000’ on the Camas Prairie in North-Central Idaho, a small community amidst an expanse of public lands, mountain ranges, wild rivers, and designated wilderness.   The Camas Prairie is a prairie plateau surrounded by rugged canyons and timbered mountains.  The Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forests contain substantial portions of four wilderness areas: the Selway-Bitterroot, the Gospel Hump, The Frank Church and Hells Canyon.  Five rivers flow nearby, three of which are designated wild and scenic: the Snake River, Salmon River, Clearwater River, Selway River, and Lochsa River.  Terrain ranges from the steep grassy slopes of the Salmon River Breaks to heavily timbered forests to the alpine lakes and snow-clad peaks of the Bitterroot divide.  Grangeville jumpers routinely encounter a full spectrum of vegetative types and fire environments.  To the west lies the Snake River and just beyond, the Wallowa-Whitman and Umatilla National Forests.  These forests are a short flight from Grangeville and consequently the jumpers often staff fires in these portions of Oregon and Washington.   Montana is also a short flight in the other direction; therefore, the Grangeville Smokejumpers have the capability to initial attack to fires in Idaho and the three neighboring states of Oregon, Washington, and Montana.

 

Grangeville Community:

Grangeville is a small community of 3,000 people surrounded by public lands and wild rivers.   This location offers unlimited opportunities for fishing, hunting, wildlife watching, hiking, paddling, mountain biking, photography, and winter sports.   The community retains a local flavor and a relaxed pace.  Grangeville offers all the basic amenities, from supermarkets to movie theaters.  The towns of Lewiston and Moscow offer additional services including commercial airports and two university campuses.   The larger cities of Boise and Missoula are both a 3.5 hr drive away.  
 

Grangeville Smokejumper Facilities:

The Grangeville Smokejumper Base is located at the Idaho County Airport and known as the Grangeville Air Center (GAC).  The smokejumper base facilities include a parachute loft, parachute tower, manufacturing area, equipment ready room, administrative offices, and weight-training equipment.  Adjoining buildings serve the Nez Perce-Clearwater Helitack crew, and airtanker base.  Although the base does not provide lodging for employees, Grangeville jumpers generally experience little trouble finding quarters for the summer.  Paved and gravel roads radiate the base providing endless routes for running and biking during smokejumper physical training.  Additionally, a network of mountain-bike trails can be found on Mt. Idaho, immediately south of town.