New Wilderness Fire Sends Smoke into Bitterroot Valley
Tuesday afternoon, an unexpected smoke column popped up west of Victor over the Bitterroot Mountains.
The Hidden Creek Fire, about 4 miles inside the Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness boundary burned "actively" and was reported at about 200 acres by the Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forest and the Ravalli County Sheriff's Office.
The smoke adds to the hazy conditions by other wilderness fires west of Ravalli County, including the Moose 1 fire at over 2,800 acres and the Lolo Peak Fire at over 6,302 acres as of Tuesday night.
On the eastern fire front, the 3,621-acre Whetstone Fire and the 1,671-acre Meyers fire on the Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest put up a high, billowing cloud Tuesday afternoon. An evacuation of residents around Moose Lake was ordered. That fire is southwest of Philipsburg.
Air quality in Hamilton has hovered in the "Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups." Check the State website for the latest readings from Hamilton and other areas.