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LibbyMt.com > News > August 2017 > Tamarack Fire Update – August 17, 2017

Tamarack Peoples Creek fires map. Photo by .
Tamarack Peoples Creek fires map

Tamarack Fire. Photo by Incident Command.
Tamarack Fire
Photo courtesy Incident Command
Tamarack Fire Update – August 17, 2017
Tamarack and People’s Creek wild fires
August 17, 2017

The Tamarack and People’s Creek wild fires are burning on the Kootenai National Forest and Weyerhaueser lands southeast of Libby. The Tamarack and Peoples Creek Fires were detected on Saturday, August 12, 2017 by a reconnaissance flight over the area. The fires were caused by lightning associated with a storm that rolled through the area Friday evening. Fire suppression responsibilities fall to Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation (DNRC). The strategy for both fires is full suppression.

The People’s Creek Fire is located about six air miles east of Libby and three air miles south of the Canoe Gulch Ranger Station, in the Fisher River drainage. It is currently about 77 acres and is 90% contained.

The Tamarack Fire is the bigger fire, 340 acres and only 20% contained. It is located about ten air miles southeast of Libby, nine miles northeast of Happy’s Inn and Hwy 2. It is about 2 miles east of Calx Mountain Lookout, between Wolf Creek and the Pleasant Valley Fisher River. The Tamarack Fire was first sized up at 10-15 acres, but quickly grew to 300 acres within the first 24 hours.

The Incident Management Team is using J. Neils Park, just north of Libby, as a Command Post. The Park remains open to the public from dawn to dusk, but users should be aware of firefighting equipment and personnel activity.

Fire restrictions are at Stage 2 for Lincoln and Flathead Counties in Montana.

From midnight August 11, 2017 until rescinded

1. Building maintaining, attending, or using a fire or campfire.
2. Smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle or building, a developed recreation site or while stopped in an area at least three feet in diameter that is barren or cleared of all flammable materials.
3. The following acts are prohibited from 1:00 p.m. to 1:00 a.m.:
a. Operating any internal combustion engine.
b. Welding, or operating acetylene or other torch with open flame.
c. Using explosives.
A one hour foot patrol in the work area is required following cessation of all activities as identified in #3 above.
4. Operating motorized vehicles off designated roads and trails.
Click on this link for additional information about local fire restrictions: https://firerestrictions.us/mt/

5 Hand Crews
5 Pieces of Logging Equipment
9 Engines
3 Dozers
220 Personnel Aircraft
2 Type 1 Helicopters
3 Type 2 Helicopters
1 Type 3 Helicopter

Tamarack Fire:
Additional local logging equipment including a feller-buncher, an excavator and grapple skidders arrived on the fire on Wednesday. They will be used to clear fuels through the thick timber on the west and southwest sides of the fire starting at the 2346H Road. A dozer line has been constructed on the northeast corner of the fire and extends to where the terrain becomes too steep for equipment. Hand crews are extending that line to the south in the more difficult terrain. Helicopters filled their buckets in nearby Lynch Lake and aided by a quick turn-around were able to help keep the fire from moving significantly on Wednesday. Fire managers continue to scout existing roads and natural fuel breaks looking for the safest and most efficient method to box in the fire.

Peoples Creek Fire:
A fireline exists around the entire perimeter. Fire crews were able to mop-up 50 feet into the interior from that perimeter, and they will be looking to expand that figure to 100 feet on Thursday.

FIRE INFORMATION: (406) 647– 0407, Tamarackfire2017@gmail.com

INCIWEB: http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/5498

FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/Tamarackfire/

Public Information Officer
Email: tamarackfire2017@gmail.com
Phone: 406-647-0407
Hours: 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.

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