U.S. Forest Service: Glacier Rim Fire Update 6/30/15

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

Release Date: Jun 30, 2015

Fire Information – Glacier Rim Fire Tuesday, June 30, 2015 9:00 AM; Flathead National Forest

Fire Information: (406) 387-3867

Email: glacierrimfire@gmail.com

Web: inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/4336

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: 85 acres; Containment: 30%

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.

Today, Tuesday June 30, fire fighters will continue to build line around the fire and reinforce already established lines. The north edge of the fire within Canyon Creek is still not contained due to steep terrain and heavy timber. Firefighters will continue to work towards total line containment with helicopters and heavy equipment assistance. Crews will continue within the park to control any spot fires. Firefighter efforts are challenged due to safety concerns involving extreme danger of falling dead trees originally burned in the Robert Fire of 2003.

Yesterday, Monday June 29th worked to build line around the fire but were unable to reach the steep north flank. They were able to make substantial progress due to higher humidity and calm winds. A fire fighter lookout spotted a hot spot within the Glacier Park and the crews within the park were able to work on it immediately. Firefighters continued the same tactics of using heavy equipment and hand crews to build fire line, with helicopters assisting. Unseasonably warm weather and extremely dry fuel conditions are driving fire behavior in these previously burned fuels. Two residences directly adjacent to the fire voluntarily chose to leave. No evacuation orders have been issued by the county. Two Bear helicopter ran their infrared camera last evening to detect any potential hot spots. They found that the interior of the fire still continues to generate intense heat, but no new spots were detected.

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 115 total personnel.

SPECIAL MESSSAGE: FOR YOUR SAFETY AND FIREFIGHTER 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.