The next community meeting will be held tomorrow, August 14 at 6pm at the Seeley Lake Elementary School.
Yesterday Heavy smoke cover shaded the fire throughout the day and slowed activity more than expected, despite a Red Flag Warning. Small growth and limited group tree torching were observed in isolated locations on the western portion of the fire. Minor activity was also seen in the Swamp Creek area, where the wet drainage bottom slowed fire growth. Indirect line construction is nearing completion along the southeast and western portions of the fire. Fuels mitigation work was completed along Cottonwood Lakes Road, between West Morrell Road and the North Fork of Cottonwood Creek. As line construction and fuels work wrapped up around the southeast portions of the fire, heavy equipment was moved to the northwest end of the fire where indirect line construction continues to be a priority.
Today Fire managers are anticipating lower fire activity through much of the fire area. Firefighters will be utilizing heavy equipment on the northwest end of the fire to tie in to the ridge of Findell Creek. Crews will be reinforcing and plumbing indirect line along the line from Morrell Mountain Lookout and Cottonwoods Lake Road. Fuels mitigation will begin on public land just north of the Double Arrow Ranch.
Fire information booths will be staffed at the Valley Market and Rovero’s Hardware Store on Highway 83 from 11am to 6pm.
In the event of an evacuation, the American Red Cross will open a shelter. It is located at the Potomac Community Center, 29827 Potomac Rd., in Potomac. The shelter is on standby, anyone seeking to pre-evacuate that requires assistance or sheltering may call the Red Cross of Montana at 1-800-272-6668. Evacuees are urged to call before leaving for the shelter, as cell phone service is limited at the shelter. More info at http://www.redcross.org/get-help/disaster-relief-and-recovery-services/find-an-open-shelter.