Helena - Lewis and Clark National Forest
U.S. Forest Service
2880 Skyway Drive Helena Montana 59602
Helena, MT 59602
·ESTIMATED· SIZE: 25,000+ acres
The fire became active around 9 a.m. today in Tom’s gulch, Alice Creek and Telephone Gulch producing a visible smoke column in the Green Mountain area. Short and long crown runs took place throughout the day, gradually pushing the fire east above the Elk Meadows/Evergreen subdivision. This movement triggered mandatory evacuations for 12 residents between mile marker 92 and Highway 434, along Highway 200, on both sides of the road.
A temporary road closure is in effect for Highway 200 between Highway 279 and Highway 287. These roads will open as soon as it is safe for traffic and firefighters working along the roadway.
The Red Cross has a shelter established at the Wolf Creek Elementary School (150 Walsh St, Wolf Creek, MT). Any resident in need of assistance can contact the Red Cross at 1-800-272-6668.
There was over 1,000+ acres of fire growth today; however, due to smoky conditions that limited visibility, firefighters were unable to get an accurate estimate of the growth. The fire is roughly 39 square miles.
An infrared flight used to determine fire growth and location is not available tonight.
Firefighters are working under a thermal belt again tonight. This blanket traps warm air in the valleys, keeping conditions warm and dry. As a result, fire behavior is not expected to slow much through the night.
Tomorrow, Red Flag conditions are effect for high winds (30-40 mph) and extremely dry conditions. This coincides with the arrival of afternoon dry thunderstorms that will produce strong outflow wind gusts over the fire area. These conditions are setting up to elicit extreme fire behavior expected to produce visible smoke columns around the fire and increase the fire’s size.
Helicopters and ground firefighters worked together to drop water in Alice Creek and Tom’s Gulch. Air support was unable to work near Telephone Gulch as extreme fire behavior made the area too hot and smoky for them to safely work.
Crews working in East Falls Creek, four miles south of Dearborn Canyon, are using hoses to assist them with mopping up hot spots to secure the containment line. Work in this area is moving slowly because of the high tree mortality and added precautions firefighters are taking to ensure their safety.
In addition to the new evacuations issued tonight, previous evacuation orders remain in effect for the Elk Meadows/Evergreen Subdivision.
To sign up to receive emergency notification messages from the Lewis and Clark County Sheriff, register for Smart911 at https://www.smart911.com/smart911/registration/registrationLanding.action
Great Basin Team 2 will be shadowing Great Basin Team 5 in preparation for a transfer of command that will take place Sunday morning. Given the dynamic fire conditions still occurring on the fire, Team members are still focusing on managing the fire while still providing a smooth transition for the next Team.
Personnel: 251 Crews: 3 Engines: 19 Water Tenders: 8 Skidgens: 3 Dozers: 6 Helicopters: 4