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Remembering the fires of 1988

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Town Crier “Briefs from the Region” (2) – 6/28/21

The fires of 1988 are remembered by anyone who lived in Yellowstone National Park’s vicinity. Because the fire was due to natural causes, for a few days, park managers let it burn. Stoked by extreme heat and drought conditions, the fire quickly grew to the point that firefighters could no longer contain it and by the end nearly 1 million acres were burned. “We had news crews in Yellowstone almost every day for a week,” recalls former Q2 News director Al Nash. “We rented motel rooms in Red Lodge to have people sleep there and to edit tape and bring them back and forth from Billings for a while. We were chartering private aircraft to bring tape out of West Yellowstone until that option was closed.” To this day, Nash calls the event a “once in a lifetime story” for anyone tasked with covering the historic event.

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