Here’s the Wednesday morning update on the Coal Ridge Fire. The fire is a little bigger, with more resources assigned today. The Coal Ridge “patrol cabin” was wrapped Tuesday evening. Note that stage 2 fire restrictions go into effect at 0001 Thursday, August 16…
Location: 10 miles west of Polebridge MT, in the Flathead National Forest
Detected: August 12, 2018, 07:45 a.m. Cause: Lightning
Lat/Long: Lat. 48° 43.475, Long. -114° 29.952 Current size: 331 acres Containment: 0%
Resources on the fire: Shared resources with the Paola Ridge Fire, 2 heavy equipment task forces, 1 engine
Ownership/Jurisdiction: Flathead National Forest; Other cooperators: Flathead County Sheriff, Office of Emergency Services
FIRE SUMMARY: The Coal Ridge Fire is burning in the Flathead National Forest. This fire is being managed with modified confine and contain tactics, with fire fighter and public safety as a priority. The fire is burning in steep terrain with subalpine forest and brushy avalanche chutes. There are no evacuation warnings in place on this incident. Any warning notices or evacuations will be coordinated with @FlatheadOES.
Following lightning storms across the Flathead National Forest evening of August 11, the Coal Ridge Fire was detected the next morning. A Type 3 fire management team is assigned to the fire. Cooler temperatures and higher relative humidity yesterday led to minimal fire behavior with limited growth. As a pre-emptive defense measure, the Coal Ridge Patrol Cabin was wrapped yesterday evening.
Today’s plan is to begin implementing shaded fuel breaks on area roads and previously treated units, using heavy equipment. The equipment utilized will include: skidgine, feller-buncher, skidder and dozer. An area closure has been ordered for the area, closing local roads and trails. A section of the PNW National Scenic Trail, between Polebridge to the East and Red Meadow Lake to the West, is impacted by this closure. The recommended alternate route is Red Meadow Road #115, which runs parallel to the trail north of the closure. Please see the enclosed map for further detail. A Type 1 Management Team has been ordered and will begin managing the fire, along with other fires in the zone, on Thursday.
The Flathead National Forest, excluding the Great Bear and Bob Marshall Wilderness Areas, is implementing Stage 2 fire restrictions at 0001 on Thursday, August 16th. Under these restrictions, the following is prohibited: building/maintaining a camp fire, smoking except within buildings/vehicles and specific areas. Hoot owl hours apply for internal combustion engines and welding. For more information, see https://firerestrictions.us.