Contact Us

Mustang Fire Causes Bitterroot Area Closure

Bitterroot Closed area
The bordered area is closed due to the advance of Idaho's Mustang forest fire. (Tod McKay USFS)
Again this year, the south end of the Bitterroot Valley is the center of activity for forest firefighters.

The Mustang Complex of fires has been growing steadily north of the Salmon River in the Salmon-Challis National Forest. It has finally crossed over the Montana border into the Bitterroot National Forest.

The fire has increased in size about 30,000 just this week and is over 205,000 acres about 8 miles west of North Fork, Idaho. Part of that fire is reaching over to US 93 in the Gibbonsville area, with evacuation warnings fanning out through that corridor.

Highway 93 is open, but there are some speed restrictions and travelers are asked to be cautious because of heavy fire traffic. The Idaho National Guard has been called out to help the 800 people on the fire lines.The Red Cross has opened a shelter at the Salmon Valley Baptist Church with sleeping, meals and shower accommodations.

The north edge of the Mustang fire crept into an area on the Montana side of the border that is next to the Chrandal Fire, which caused area closures earlier this summer. These closures are similar (see photo).

Smoke is coming into the Bitterroot Valley from the Mustang Fire and the Powell Complex of fires in Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness. The Powell Complex is now over 26,000 acres and the initial path of that smoke drops it into Victor, causing the Victor football game Saturday afternoon to be moved to relatively smoke-free Arlee.

The Bitterroot Valley air quality Friday afternoon, using information from the monitor at the Ravalli County Courthouse, shows both the hourly and cumulative particulate count to be “Unhealthy,” with means those with breathing problems should avoid prolonged exertion, and others should limit their exertion.

Best of KLYQ

Recommended for You

Best of the Web

Leave a Comment

It appears that you already have an account created within our VIP network of sites on . To keep your personal information safe, we need to verify that it's really you. To activate your account, please confirm your password. When you have confirmed your password, you will be able to log in through Facebook on both sites.

Forgot your password?

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

It appears that you already have an account on this site associated with . To connect your existing account just click on the account activation button below. You will maintain your existing VIP profile. After you do this, you will be able to always log in to using your original account information.

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

Please fill out the information below to help us provide you a better experience.

(Forgot your password?)

Not a member? Sign up here

Sign up for KLYQ Club VIP quickly by connecting your Facebook account. It's just as secure and no password to remember!

Sign up to have exclusive KLYQ Club VIP contests, events, coupons, presales, and much more delivered to you for FREE.