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Forest Fire Update – Gold Pan and Moose Meadows – August 5

forest service excavator fireline
Excavator Clearing Understory Vegetation Forest Road No.1303 (USFS Photo)
The fire crews at the Gold Pan and Moose Meadows forest fires are reporting increased burning as the forest dries out, following last week’s rain showers.

The 3,500 acre Moose Meadows Fire is now 60 percent contained and there are no structures threatened at this time. Firefighters have been working on hot spots that have been popping up over the weekend. The fire is about 18 miles southeast of Philipsburg on the Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest. The Stage II evacuation warning for the Middle Fork road and Moose Lake area is still in effect. The Middle Fork Road is only open to local residents.

The Gold Pan Complex is over 16,342 acres and is large enough that fire officials expect it to burn through the rest of the fire season. Currently, the crews are trying to keep it south of the Magruder Corridor and west of Paradise Road and Hells Half Acre Road. The fire is in the West Fork Ranger District of the Bitterroot National Forest.

According to Information Officer Dixie Dies, There are two contingency lines being completed farther east, outside the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness in the West Fork. One is between Nez Perce Road and Blue Joint Bay and the other is north of the Nez Perce Road-West Fork Road junction.

The Magruder Road is closed at Fales Flat Campground, though the campground remains open. There has been structure protection at Observation Point and along Paradise Road.

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