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Gold Pan map detail August 22
The Nez Peak Fire of the Gold Pan Complex has come into the Blue Joint drainage. This map is from August 22. (USFS map)
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Gold Pan Complex Forest Fire Invades Montana

The Gold Pan Complex of fires includes the Gold Pan fire, the Thirteen fire, the Goat fire and the Nez Peak fire.

The Gold Pan Complex has burned down into the upper Blue Joint drainage in Montana in the West Fork Ranger District of the Bitterroot National Forest (see photo)

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Photo courtesy of DanDawson/Flickr
Photo courtesy of DanDawson/Flickr
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The Rock Creek Fire – Montana’s Second Priority Blaze

While the Lolo Creek Complex fire has garnered the most attention over the past week, the Rock Creek fire near Red Lodge is Montana's second highest priority.

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Lake Fire
The August 18 view from air of the Lake Fire. (USFS Photo)
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New Fire in Frank Church Wilderness Adds More Smoke

Six fires in the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness comprise the over 4,000 acre Lake Complex, which is west of the much larger 29,000 acre Gold Pan Complex.

The Lake Complex has two major fires - the Lake Fire, which was spotted August 14 and is now at least 3,300 acres and the Center Fire, which is over 1,100 acres

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firefighters
Work along the firelines at the Gold Pan Complex. (USFS Photo)
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University of Montana Extends Fall Deadlines for Student Firefighters

The firelines at many of the wildfires in the area have people who are planning to attend college this fall.

The problem has been the past few years that fire season has extended beyond the registration dates at colleges

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school house and west fork two forest fires
From a vantage point south in the Bitterroot Valley, this is the mid-afternoon smoke column from the West Fork Two and School House forest fires, west of Lolo. (Fullerton Photo)
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School House and West Fork 2 Forest Fires Blow Up – Highway 12 Closed

High wind took two forest fires to new heights on the north and south sides of US Highway 12 west of Lolo. The School House fire on the north and the West Fork 2 fire on the south created a huge column of smoke by 3 p

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craig glazier
Craig Glazier speaks at the Friday public meeting on the Gold Pan Complex. (Tod McKay Photo)
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Gold Pan Fire is Still in the Wilderness, but Larger – August 19 Update

After some wind and continued hot temperatures this weekend, the Gold Pan Complex of forest fires is now listed at about 27,034 acres in the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness.

The Northern Rockies Type 1 team, led by Doug Turman, assumed command Monday

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beaver creek flames
Flames from the Beaver Creek Fire. (USFS Photo)
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Sun Valley Fire Causes Evacuation of Over 2,000 Homes

The 100,000 acre Beaver Creek Fire has caused the evacuation of over 2,000 homes in the Hailey and Ketchum, Idaho, areas.

The fire has been pushed by high winds for several days and personnel now number over 1,150 people with 10 helicopters and support from air tankers

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nez perce peak
The Nez Peak Fire August 14. (USFS Photo)
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Nez Perce Peak Forest Fire Added to the Gold Pan Complex

The Gold Pan forest fire Complex in the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness now consists of four named fires - Gold Pan, Goat, Thirteen and Nez Peak. All together, the fires have burned over 18,000 acres on the West Fork Ranger District of the Bitterroot National Forest

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burning slash along Magruder Road
Fire crews burning slash near the Deep Creek Campground along Magruder Road. (USFS Photo)
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Gold Pan Complex Forest Fire is Burning Slowly – Bass Creek Logging

With the Gold Pan Complex growing only about 20 acres Wednesday, the fire crews were able to conduct some burnouts and get rid of slash piles created when they removed hazardous snags from high winds last week

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burned trees uprooted by microburst
Along the Magruder Road, burned trees were uprooted by thunderstorm microbursts Friday. (USFS Photo)
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Friday Storm Snaps Trees – Humans Leave Campfires Burning

The Friday thunderstorms, which stretched from Lost Trail Pass to the Canadian border, caused power outages, fallen trees and broken branches throughout the Bitterroot Valley. Over 10,000 cloud-to-ground lightning strikes were counted by satellite

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