Forest Fires ‘Behaved’ Over the Weekend
The weekend cold front that passed through Montana didn't have much effect on nearby forest fires, according to official reports. The Cinnabar Fire on the Lolo National Forest east of the Bitterroot Valley stayed within the Welcome Creek Wilderness boundaries. It did grow to the north, according to weekend reports, and is now 2,689 acres in size. Some of the fire activity was in the south fork of Gilbert Creek and firefighters are patrolling firelines to the north and east of the fire area. The Type 2 Management team will hand over management to a Type 3 team Wednesday. Areas around the fire are closed, but the Rock Creek road and recreation areas have continued to remain open during the fire.
Bitterroot Fire Management Officer Mark Wilson told the Ravalli County Commissioners Tuesday morning that the Lake Como Fire is 80 percent contained and remains up on the ridge north of the popular lake. The 12 Mile fire up Lost Horse is still burning in a steep cliff area and helicopters will drop water on it when needed. Helicopters are also being used to help with dam repairs at the backcountry lakes. He said there were no new fires over the weekend on the Bitterroot National Forest. However, with only a tenth of an inch of rain from the Monday storms, the area remains very dry and the fire danger is "Very High" on the forest. Be careful with your campfires - put 'em out when you leave your campsite.