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UPDATE: Windstorm causes roughly 8 fires to grow in Flathead area

Courtesy Somers Lakeside Fire Dept.

UPDATE (2:04 p.m.) –  Nicole Stickney, a spokeswoman with the DNRC Northwest Land Office, says a Type III Incident Management Team has been engaged for management and oversight of about eight fires locally.

The team is composed of roughly 70 personnel right now with heavy equipment and two Type II helicopters.

Stickney told MTN News that approximately four of the blazes are more than an acre. The others are less than a .10 of an acre. She says the fires are either human-caused from things like slashed debris burning or power lines that fell during Tuesday’s extreme wind storm.

In addition to the fires on Blacktail Mountian, crews are also working at the scene of the Deer Run fire near Foys Lake.

The blaze, which is estimated at about 30 to 40 acres, is burning on private property and in the vicinity of structures. fire officials say that at this point, none of the structures are directly threatened.  Firefighters are engaged in hitting this fire today and its in a positive trend of getting contained.

Fire officials have told MTN News that all of the fires are human-caused.

We’ll have more information as it becomes available.


KALISPELL – Tuesday’s windstorm did more than just bring down trees and knock out power to thousands in the Flathead — it also pushed several wildfires.

Flathead County Fire Service Manager Lincoln Chute told MTN News that a local Type III Incident Management Team is being assembled to battle the blazes.

There are four or five fires now actively burning in the Flathead including near Foys Lake near Kalispell, in Glacier National Park, in Lincoln County and on Blacktail Mountain above Lakeside.

The Somers Lakeside Fire Department reports they were called out twice on Tuesday to deal with the fire on Blacktail Mountain.

The blaze spread from an initial ½ acre to an estimated 40 to 50 acres. A U.S. Forest Service crew is now dealing with the blaze which, they say, is not threatening any structures at this time.

We’ll have more information as it becomes available.

– Information from Nicole Miller and Mark Thorsell included in this report.