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Trail Creek Fire

Unit Information

Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest
U.S. Forest Service
420 Barrett St
Dillon, MT 59725

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Incident Contacts

Alder Creek andTrail Creek Fire Information
Phone: 406-624-9452
Hours: 8:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m.

Wisdom Ranger District
Phone: 406-689-3243
Hours: 7:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m.

Highlighted Activity

07/30/2021 Trail Creek, Alder Creek, Christensen and Black Mountain Update 7.30.21
Trail Creek Fire Update July 30, 2021Trail Creek Fire: On Thursday, higher humidity and water drops from a Type 1 helicopter helped minimize fire activity in the drainages west of the Continental...
News - 07/30/2021
Map Trail Creek Fire 7.30.21Image options: [ Full Size ]

The Trail Creek Fire started on July 8, 2021 approximately 20 miles West of Wisdom, Montana, as the result of lightning. The fire terrain is made up of forest timber with 2 feet high underbrush and heavy fuel loads of dead and down Lodgepole Pine. Fire crews are constructing indirect containment lines, while providing structure protection on existing cabins and sites at the National Park Service Big Hole Battlefield. 

The fire is being managed by the Southwest Type 1 Team #1, Incident Commander Alan Sinclair. 
Forest Closure orders are in effect for for this fire please see: Beaverhead-Deerlodge NF: Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest - Alerts & Notices ( , Salmon-Challis NF: Salmon-Challis National Forest - Alerts & Notices ( for most up to date information on closures. 

For information on the up evacuation status and preparation level please contact Lemhi County Sheriff  Info: 208-756-8980.

Basic Information

Current as of
Incident TypeWildfire
Date of OriginThursday July 08th, 2021 approx. 12:00 AM
Location20 miles West of Wisdom, MT on HWY 43
Incident CommanderAlan Sinclair, Southwest Type 1 Team #1
Coordinates45.683 latitude, -113.854 longitude

Current Situation

Total Personnel191
Size34,244 Acres
Estimated Containment DateMonday November 01st, 2021 approx. 12:00 AM
Fuels Involved

Timber (Litter and Understory)

Brush (2 feet)

Heavy fuel loading of dead and down lodgepole Pine. Valleys can be characterized as short sage and grass mix.

Significant Events

Uphill runs, flanking, torching

Active to moderate fire behavior due to change in wind and increased drying.


Planned Actions

Continue line prep from lost trail road to rat creek. Structure group will continue to deploy structure protection resources. Construct checking and holding features intersecting fuels treatments and Gibbonsville road that would allow for offensive actions to be taken to protect the community and would impact high severity fire above the community from larger burnout operations. Construct control lines to protect VARS through direct and indirect line construction. The primary effort of resources on the trail creek incident is constructing mechanized line on identified ridge systems west of the fires edge on the Idaho side near 3-mile creek and looking for opportunities to secure the fires edge and reduce/prevent the need to use Hwy 93 as the primary control feature. This would also reduce the potential southerly spread.

Projected Incident Activity

12 hours: Single tree torching, backing and flanking. Fire expected to burn into the early nighttime hours.

24 hours: Wind expected out of the east, fire expected to burn towards the west. Moderate fire behavior expected, single tree torching, short uphill runs. Wind alignment with terrain would increase fire behavior.

48 hours: Low to moderate fire activity due to increased cloud cover, humidity and potential for rain.

72 hours: Continued cloud cover and rain potential will keep fire activity low to moderate.

Anticipated after 72 hours: Continued cloud cover and rain potential will keep fire behavior low.


SW IMT Team 1 is also managing the Alder Creek and Christensen incidents and has assumed command of the Black Mountain incident. Acreage reduced due to more accurate mapping.

Current Weather

Weather Concerns

Today on the fire temperatures reached in to the upper 80s with humidity in the high teens and northeast winds gusting into the teens so far this afternoon, and northeast winds are expected to gust 20-25 mph on the Trail Creek fire this evening.

Tomorrow humidity will trend upward a few percent with similar temperatures. Winds will turn southeast and gust 15-20 mph in the late afternoon. There is a 40% chance of thunderstorms in the area tomorrow.