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Sapphire Complex-Little Hogback

Unit Information

Lolo National Forest
U.S. Forest Service
Missoula, MT 59804

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9-20-17 Update

Sapphire Complex-Little Hogback Wildfire
News – 9/20/2017

Meyers Sapphire Complex Fires Update

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Fire Information Line: (406) 859-3211



Facebook: Lolo National Forest Beaverhead-Deerlodge National ForestBitterroot National Forest

Due to cold temperatures, accumulated precipitation and minimal fire activity, management of the fire area will be transferred from the Southern Area Incident Management Team to a Type 3 team led by Gary Lambert this evening. Rehabilitation work and mop up continues.

Sapphire Complex:43,733 acres

Location: Approximately 25 miles south-southeast of Missoula

Containment: 90%

Cause: Lightning

Total Personnel: 51

Three fires comprised the Sapphire Complex: Little Hogback, Goat Creek, and Sliderock. The Goat Creek and Sliderock Fires are being managed by the Lolo National Forest. Rehabilitation work continues.

Little Hogback Fire: 34,552 acres

Goat Creek Fire: 8,300 acres

Sliderock Fire: 901 acres

Meyers Fire:62,034 acres

Location: Approximately 25 miles southwest of Philipsburg, Montana

Containment: 90%

Cause: Lightning

Total Personnel: All team personnel have been demobilized from the incident. Local agency personnel have assumed management of the incident.

Rehabilitation work. Areas of smoldering fuels will be mopped up.

Meyers-Sapphire Complex: Due to rainfall, there is minimal threat around private property and structures.

There are no evacuations in place.


As of September 19, 2017 - Closures rescinded for:

The Meyers Fire

The Hogback Fire

The Bitterroot National Forest has removed all fire closures.

After midnight on Sept. 21, 2017, all closures on the Sapphire Complex are rescinded. This includes lands in the Upper Willow Creek drainage, Scotchman Gulch, Ram Mountain areas, the Miner Gulch Road and BLM roads 4638, 4642, 4639, 4640, and 4641.

Temporary flight restrictions (TFR) for the Sapphire Complex and Meyers Fire areas are lifted.

Stage 1 fire restrictions have been rescinded in the following areas near the Meyers Fire: Beaverhead County and Granite County south of I-90 and east of the Lolo National Forest boundary. Outdoor debris and pile burning are still prohibited. For fire restriction details, visit

Safety in areas recently opened

Burned areas present unique hazards to campers, hikers, and hunters and especially those who may remain in these areas for extended periods.

Those traveling on Forest roads through burned areas should carry a small saw or axe to remove downed trees that may block your route.

Snags, dead, standing trees are prone to fall without warning in burned areas. In windy conditions, the danger of falling snags is increased and visitors should always be alert to the condition of trees and the weather.

The base of a tree may be consumed in a wildlife and the stump completely burned out, leaving a deep pocket or hole not visible to anyone walking through the area. Use caution when walking anywhere in the burned area.


Wet, cold weather is predicted through the rest of the week. Snow is possible at 5,000-6,000 feet this week.

For further information, visit and select “Meyers Fire” or “Sapphire Complex” in Montana, and follow the Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest Facebook, Bitterroot National Forest Facebook or Lolo National Forest pages.