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Bull Gin Complex

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Unit Information

31374 US Hwy 2 Libby Montana 59923 
31374 US Hwy 2 Libby Montana 59923 

Incident Contacts

  • Public Information
    8:00 AM to 8:00 PM (7 days a week)

09.22.2022 Daily Update

Bull Gin Complex
News - 09/22/2022

Total Acreage: 4,225

Completion: 32%


Government Fire: 2,740 acres
Billiard Fire: 1,195 acres
Isabella Lake Fire: 290 acres  

Please join Northern Rockies Team 2 and the Kootenai National Forest and for a Community Meeting.  Friday, 9/23/22, 10:00 AM; Noxon Fire Hall 401 Noxon Avenue, Noxon, MT, 59853


Today’s rain will significantly calm fire activity for a few days. There was a new fire start named the Wanless Fire yesterday, to which crews assigned to the Complex responded via Initial Attack. Fire activity upon arrival was low and continues to decrease as firefighters mop up. Fire behavior throughout the Complex is expected to remain minimal through Friday. This will allow resources to focus on monitoring, patrolling, removing unneeded hose lays, advancing suppression repair, and mopping up.


Government Fire: The Fire continues to be most active in the southern area and has met the control line near Rock Creek. Firefighters ensure that the fire stays north of the dozer line by extinguishing hot spots. Engines continue to monitor the private residences south of the fire. Today, masticators will advance their work in the southwestern area while crews remove unneeded hose lays.


Billiard Fire: Firefighters are gridding — a systematic way of patrolling — the fire perimeter. Given fire conditions, all hose lays near Billiard Cabin have been removed. Crews are also repairing unneeded handline. Some firefighters were able to respond to yesterday’s new fire start and will continue mopping up, extinguishing hot spots in the coming days.


Isabella Lake Fire: Aerial flights continue to monitor the fire. 



The weather word for today is rain. While the heaviest part of the storm was this morning, showers will continue through the day. In total, the Complex will receive 0.15-0.3” of precipitation. A wind shift, now coming from the southwest, will also occur. Today’s forecast calls for temperatures between 50-60°. 


Even though it’s raining, smoke will persist, and the fires still have the potential to spread. The Fires will stay active, especially in areas where the canopy prevents dry fuels from receiving moisture. It will take a season-ending event to extinguish these fires. This event will include sustained lower temperatures, shorter burning periods, increased relative humidity, shorter sunlight duration, and significant moisture. Today’s rain event will not be a season-ending event.



Recent updates refer to completion, rather than containment. Wildfire patterns are changing, causing firefighters to adjust how they can most safely and effectively fight fire. Steep and rugged terrain, dead snags, and other safety hazards make it unsafe for firefighters to fight the Fire directly. Therefore, this Complex, like an increasing number of wildfires, is utilizing a “point protection” strategy. This approach focuses on values at risk (such as private property, infrastructure, high value assets, ecological resources) as “points.” Firefighters establish control and contingency lines around these points, working toward completion.


On September 8th the Sanders County Sheriff’s Office placed the residents along Government Mountain Road and Timber Ridge Road into pre-evacuation status. For status of emergency conditions, please sign up for Sanders County Emergency Alerts at 406-203-0082.


Government Mountain Road and Rock Creek Road are closed to the public. The Noxon Refuse Site remains open during regular hours. Area, road, and trail closures are in place for the Government, Billiard, and Isabella Lake Fires to provide for public safety and firefighting operations. See Inciweb for maps and closure descriptions:

Information Phone Line: 406-426-9644