Montana Department of Natural Resources & Conservation
1539 Eleventh Ave.
Helena, MT 59601
Personnel: 257 Structures Lost: 12 (secondary structures)
Weather and Fire Conditions: Meteorologists forecast a slight chance of showers and thunderstorms accompanying a cold front passing through the fire areas Tuesday. Northwest winds will increase in the afternoon to 15-20 mph with potential gusts of 60mph. There is a Red Flag Warning in place through midnight tonight.
Richard Spring Fire (170,848 acres, 65% contained): The Richard Spring Fire’s northern and eastern perimeters are in patrol status and fire managers continue working with landowners to identify suppression repair needs. Crews are working in these areas mopping up any hot spots encountered during patrol. Late in the day, crews contained a one-acre interior fire within previously unburned fuels near Highway 39 and Rosebud Creek Road on the west side of the fire. Gusty winds on Tuesday also resulted in active fire behavior on the south side of the fire where it previously burned south across Highway 212, resulting in an approximately 50-acre slop-over north of Alderson Road and south of Highway 212. Aerial resources responded immediately (with both water and retardant), and dozer operators were able to build indirect line around the spot fire. In order to prevent further fire growth and secure the indirect fire line, firefighters on the ground conducted burn out operations overnight. Crews will begin mopping up that area today. Fire resources are staged around the fire and are prepared for initial attack in the event of new starts from yesterday’s lightning.
Lame Deer Fire (5,427 acres, 70% contained): Crews continue to secure and mop up containment lines around the Lame Deer Fire. Strong winds impacted the fire yesterday during thunderstorms with no additional growth. Fire managers are pleased with the status of the fire lines, and crews will continue to mop up and patrol today while the cold front passes.
Evacuations and Fire Closures: The community of Ashland, including the Ashland Divide, Rabbit Town, North Tongue River Road, and the St. Labre Indian Academy Campus remain in a Level 1 “Be Ready” evacuation stage.
The community of Lame Deer, Muddy Cluster, and Rosebud Cut Across remains in Level 2 “Set” evacuation stage for all those who do not have medical conditions. Pre-evacuation notices remain in effect for Rosebud Creek from Greenleaf Creek to Cherry Creek and the Lame Deer Divide Road located on the Northern Cheyenne Reservation south of Lame Deer.
Highway 212 remains closed between Broadus and Crow Agency to all non-residents. Residents should continue to check Rosebud County Sheriff’s and DES Facebook pages, Northern Cheyenne Disaster & Emergency Services Facebook page, as well as the Richard Spring InciWeb page for the most current closure information.
Special Messages: Please avoid unnecessary travel in the fire areas for the safety of fire crews and be aware of loose livestock.
Primary and Cooperating Agencies: MT-DNRC, Northern Cheyenne Tribe, BIA Northern Cheyenne Agency, Rosebud County Sheriff’s Office, Rosebud County Disaster & Emergency Services, Ashland Fire Department, BLM, Custer-Gallatin National Forest. Additionally, numerous volunteers, private landowners, volunteer fire departments and adjacent county agencies coordinated to provide initial attack of the fire, offer emergency assistance, and support firefighters.