U.S. Forest Service: Glacier Rim Fire Update 7/1/15

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

Release Date: Jul 1, 2015

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: 35%

Current Status: The Glacier Rim Fire started on June 27, 2015, at approximately 1 p.m. 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, Tuesday June 30, firefighters continued to build line around the fire and reinforce already established lines. Firefighters continued to work towards total line containment with helicopters and heavy equipment assistance. The spot fires within the park were mopped up and rehabbed by the crew working there.

Today, Wednesday July 1, the fire continues to burn hot within the interior of the established perimeter. A small area on the north edge of the fire within Canyon Creek is still not contained due to steep terrain and heavy timber; the efforts today include setting up sprinklers along the north edge of fire and cooling the hot spots within the interior of the fire with helicopters. Now that the spot fires within Glacier National Park are dead out, firefighters are being pulled later this evening and reassigned to the main fire. Firefighter efforts are challenged due to safety concerns involving extreme danger of large snags and 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. Two residences directly adjacent to the fire voluntarily chose to leave. No evacuation orders have been issued by the county.

The following resources are assigned to the fire: three 20-person fire crews and several other smaller modules of firefighters, two engines, three water tenders, three 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 120 total personnel.

SPECIAL MESSSAGE: Stage 1 Fire restrictions will go into effect for all of Northwest Montana on Friday, July 3, 2015. 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.

Fire Information: 406/387-3867
Email: glacierrimfire@gmail.com
Web: inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/4336