Wildfire

A new state revenue update says Montana’s rainy day and firefighting funds are looking flush as more money is coming in than projected. But a report from legislative researchers indicates the recent cashflow spike could be a temporary blip.

After a tame fire season, the Flathead National Forest hopes to spark a number of prescribed burns in the coming weeks, but rain could limit how much work fire managers get done.

A map of the red flag warning issued for most of Montana September 4.
National Weather Service

Large swaths of Montana and Wyoming are facing critical fire danger today.

Fire fighers use drip torches to contain a grass fire ignited by a burning coal seam on the Northern Cheyenne Reservation over Labor Day weekend.
Jon Kohn / Bureau of Indian Affairs

Fire crews on the Northern Cheyenne Reservation have counted 80-plus coal seam fires. This season, some are new and have caused grass fires, while others date back decades.

Crews are trying to finish digging control lines around the 20 acre Welcome 1002 Fire burning a few miles southwest of the town of Hot Springs on the Flathead Indian Reservation.

C.T. Camel, fire management specialist for the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes, says firefighters are working quick to preempt high projected temperatures the rest of the week.

Firefighters in yellow stand by the side of the Mountain View Fire near Molt, Montana
Kayla Tillman / via Facebook


A fire near Molt grew to almost 3,000 acres Thursday morning but fire officials had optimistic news for residents by late afternoon.

Brimstone Fire from Yellowstone Lake August 28, 2019
YNP/Public Domain

Yellowstone National Park staff are working to reroute backpackers southeast of Yellowstone Lake after the Brimstone Fire grew to an estimated 80 acres Wednesday evening.

Smoke from prescribed burns in Idaho is making its way to western Montana Wednesday as the Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forest begins its prescribed burn season.

The fires ignited Wednesday are expected to burn for several weeks. According to Missoula County Air Quality specialist Sarah Coefield, "These burns are typically the most smoky during and immediately following ignition."

A map of the Brimstone Bay Fire in Yellowstone National Park, August 27, 2019.
YNP/Public Domain

Yellowstone National Park closed a backcountry campsite in the southeast part of the park due to a new half-acre wildfire Tuesday.

The Lolo National Forest Facebook page said this afternoon that crews were actively responding to and suppressing two new wildfires on the Missoula Ranger District.

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