Fawn Fire in Yellowstone grows to 900-plus acres
By Joseph T. O’Connor EBS Editor
A lightning-caused fire that started in Yellowstone National Park on Aug. 4 swelled to more than 900 acres on Sunday, and is currently the only active fire burning in the park, according to a statement released by the National Park Service Sunday afternoon.
The Fawn Fire is burning near Fawn Pass in the northwest section of Yellowstone National Park, approximately 35 miles southeast of Big Sky, Montana. The blaze, which was reported by an outfitter the evening of Aug. 4, grew significantly from 500 acres Saturday to 915 acres Sunday.
The Fawn Fire does not currently pose a threat to visitors, according to the statement, and crews are monitoring it by air. Due to active fire activity, however, the following closures remain in place:
– WB1, WB3, WB4, WB6
– Bighorn Pass trail eastbound at the junction of the cut-off trail to the Fawn Pass Trail.
– Bighorn Pass trail westbound at Bighorn Pass.
– Fawn Pass trail eastbound at the junction of the cut-off trail to the Big Horn Pass Trail.
– Fawn Pass trail westbound at campsite 1F1.
Rain and thunderstorm activity Saturday and Sunday deposited 0.29 inches of rain and kept temperatures on the cooler side.
“Fire activity is expected to increase in the coming days [particularly] in the afternoons as temperatures rise, relative humidity levels drop, and gusty winds increase,” the press release said.
Fire staff are putting structure protection around the Fawn Pass cabin today by setting up sprinkler systems and wrapping the structure in protective material. Yellowstone Superintendent Dan Wenk approved a plan to monitor the blaze, according to the statement, and two three-person crews are poised to respond to possible new starts in the park, due to thunderstorm activity.
The Fawn Fire is the ninth fire in the park this year, and fire danger in the park has been elevated to “Extreme.”
At approximately 7 p.m. Saturday, the Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office reported that the Limestone Fire was burning approximately 2 acres on private property in the Bridger Range north of Bozeman’sSpringhill community. Fire crews from the Forest Service and the Central Valley Fire Department reported to the fire on Aug. 6 and received some help in the form of rain over the weekend.
A smokejumper team made significant progress Saturday night, the Forest Service said in a statement Sunday, and were able to construct fireline around the blaze. A statement Monday from the Forest Service indicated that the Limestone Fire is now 100 percent contained.
An earlier version of this article reported that the Limestone Fire was on Forest Service land. The fire was on private property.
This article was updated at 4:30 p.m. Sunday. EBS will continue to update these stories as information becomes available.