Rice Ridge Fire activity, Courtesy: Inciweb

SEELEY LAKE- The Rice Ridge Fire consumed 48,530 acres on Sunday, with the last infrared flight estimate at 10:45 p.m. Sunday night placing the fire at 101,424 acres.

Fire information officer Mark Vosburgh said most of the growth was on the eastern edge of the blaze, and north of Highway 200 and Cottonwood Lakes Road into the Bob Marshall Wilderness Area.

Containment lines near Seeley Lake and the Double Arrow Ranch area held, with no significant growth.

On the northwest edge of the blaze where there have been the most recent evacuations, there was some fire growth but nothing significant.

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Fire managers say they expected windy conditions due to the passing cold front with easterly winds, and had prepared containment lines. Still, the amount of growth was surprising.

Greg Poncin’s Type 1 Incident Management Team is taking over management of the Rice Ridge Fire Tuesday morning.

All evacuation orders and warnings in Missoula and Powell counties remain the same.

The warning area is everything else north of Highway 200 with the west and east boundaries being Missoula and Lewis and Clark counties.

Updated information can be found on the Rice Ridge Fire Inciweb page and on our Fire Watch page.

-Augusta McDonnell reporting for MTN


The following areas are under a mandatory evacuation order:

Northern Boundary:

  • The junction of Highway 83 and Cedar Lane northeast to Morrell Creek Road. The boundary continues along the Cottonwood Lakes Road east to the Forest Boundary.

Eastern Boundary:

  • Cottonwood Lakes Road at the Forest Boundary and south to the northern boundary of the Double Arrow.

Southern Boundary:

  • The junction of Highway 83 and Whitetail Drive east to the junction of Whitetail Drive and Dolly Varden. The southern boundary continues east to include the area north of the Commons Area and eastward to the intersection of Montana Drive and South Canyon Drive, continuing southeast along Montana Drive to the junction with Glacier Drive and then south to the junction with Double Arrow Road including Pyramid Loop and all areas in the Double Arrow Subdivision to the south and east.

Western Boundary:

  • The junction of Highway 83 and Cedar Lane south to the junction of Highway 83 and Whitetail Drive.

The following areas are under a pre-evacuation warning:

  • The area from the south Boyscout Road north to Tamaracks Resort, west of Highway 83 and east of the lake
  • The Big Sky and Emerald Lake areas
  • All properties from the intersection of Woodworth Road and Highway 83, East to Skilly Drive
  • All properties north of Woodworth Road
  • Both sides of Highway 83 N. from Tamarack Resort to Bear Grass, extending to Bear Grass Lane.
  • Loon Lane
  • Camp Creek.
  • Both sides of Boy Scout Road to the Fawn Creek intersection.

If you plan to self-evacuate please stop at the checkpoint set up between Cory’s Valley Market and the Wilderness Gateway Inn in Seeley Lake. This area is staffed between 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. If you are out of the area please call 406-396-1386 or fill out the online form by clicking here: http://bit.ly/SeeleyEvac

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