U.S. Forest Service: Glacier Rim Fire Update 6/29/15

Glacier Rim Fire with Helicopter
Glacier Rim Fire with Helicopter

Here is the official Monday evening report on the status of the Glacier Rim Fire:

Glacier Rim Fire Update  —  11am
Fire Information — 406-387-3867

The Glacier Rim Fire is burning on the Glacier View Ranger District, in the Flathead National Forest and Glacier National Park. This fire is being managed with full suppression tactics, with fire fighter and public safety as a priority.

Fire Summary:
Location: North of Columbia Falls, MT, approximately 11.5 miles up the North Fork Road in the vicinity of Glacier Rim.
Detected: June 27, 2015
Cause: Human caused, under investigation.
Legal Description: SE, Section 27, T32N, R20W: Lat/Long: Lat. 48 30′ 9″ North, Long. 114 8′ 39″
Current Size: 80 acres; Containment: 25%

Current Status: The Glacier Rim fire started on June 27, 2015, at approximately 1 p.m. The fire is believed to be human caused and is under investigation. The fire is burning in the old 2003 Robert Fire burned area. The fuels are mixed heavy dead timber and brush, with significant snag hazard. The fire is primarily located west of the North Fork Road, though it has spotted across the North Fork River in to Glacier National Park.

Yesterday, Sunday, June 28th crews worked to build fire line and contain the flanks of the fire. Control lines have been completed on the east side of the fire, nearest to the North Fork Road, and crews are working on the south and north sides with heavy equipment to build fire line. Helicopters were used to assist with containment on the leading edges. The spot fires on the park site were staffed with firefighters. Today, Monday, June 29th firefighters will continue the same tactics of using heavy equipment and hand crews to build fire line, with helicopters assisting. Firefighter efforts are challenged due to safety concerns involving extreme danger of falling dead trees originally burned in the Robert Fire of 2003. Unseasonably warm weather and extremely dry fuel conditions are driving fire behavior in these previously burned fuels. An incoming weather system may bring winds to the fire. There are 6 threatened structures. Two residences have evacuated, but there is not a general evacuation notice.

The following resources are assigned to the fire: three 20-person fire crews and several other smaller modules of firefighters, two engines, two water tenders, two helicopters, a mix of heavy equipment including a dozer, two feller-bunchers, a grappel skidder and an excavator, two jet boats to facilitate floater safety on the river, a local type 3 Incident Management Team composed of Flathead National Forest, Glacier National Park, Flathead County, and MT State Department of Natural Resources, for a total of 90 total firefighters.

SPECIAL MESSSAGE: FOR YOUR SAFETY AND THE FIRE FIGHTERS SAFETY DO NOT STOP IF YOU ARE TRAVELING IN THE FIRE AREA. Vehicles on driving on the North Fork Road are asked to not stop in the fire area. River floaters on the river are asked to not stop in the fire area. Helicopters are working over head to shuttle fire fighters to the fire as well as performing water drops. The helicopters cannot fly overhead if people are stopped below.

Today, the fire information center will be working to start up an inciweb site and an email for the fire.