This photo of the Park Creek Fire north of Lincoln is from exactly a year ago. What a different summer thus far, but weather conditions this week could lead to new wildfires and explosive growth. The fires currently burning in the state all have positive reports currently, as containment increases with minimal to no fire growth. However, later this week will turn hot with low humidity and stronger winds. Some of the worst fire weather conditions we have seen this summer are likely at times this week and next. A weak cold front will drop out of Canada Tuesday morning and will drop temperatures back slightly with a northeast breeze up to 15mph. A very isolated thunderstorm, likely only 2 or 3 will develop Tuesday afternoon and evening. Wednesday will really heat up as highs climb into the 90s. A few isolated storms are possible as well. Southwest wind increasing to nearly 20mph gusts will elevate that fire potential. Smoky skies will likely increase as well with more wildland fires burning to our southwest in Idaho, Oregon and California. Thursday, a cold front will move through the state with isolated storms in central and eastern Montana. It will be another hot day with low humidity and gusty wind. Friday will be slightly cooler, but low humidity and wind increasing to 30mph gusts will likely make for Red Flag Warning conditions. This weekend, the wind will ease up and the temperature will cool back down. However next week will be even hotter as temperatures could eclipse 100 for some of Montana’s cities next Tuesday and Wednesday. This year’s wildfire season could really kick off in a bad way.