Howe Ridge Fire burns thousands of acres in Glacier National Park

The fire is on the north end of Lake McDonald north of West Glacier, Montana

Howe Ridge Fire in Glacier National Park

Above: The Howe Ridge Fire at the north end of Lake McDonald, August 12, 2018. NPS photo.

(Originally published at noon August 16, 2018)

The Howe Ridge Fire in Glacier National Park has burned 3,500 acres at the north end of Lake McDonald 8 miles north of West Glacier, Montana. It started August 11 from a lightning strike and is being “managed”, or herded around, rather than being fully suppressed. The 78 personnel assigned to the fire are protecting structures and utilizing water drops from air tankers and helicopters to slow the spread where needed. However on Wednesday fixed wing aircraft were grounded due to heavy smoke.

Structural protection crews worked Wednesday to reduce risk to buildings at the head of Lake McDonald and Kelly’s Camp.

The time-lapse video of the fire below is very impressive:


The Southwest Area Type 1 Incident Management Team, under the command of John Pierson, is onsite and will be taking over management of the fire at 6:00 a.m. Friday. Mr. Pierson’s team is also managing two other fires, the Paola Ridge and Coal Ridge fires.

map Howe Ridge Fire
Map showing the perimeter of the Howe Ridge Fire based on a mapping flight at 10:30 p.m. MDT August 15, 2018.

Area closures and evacuations remain in place. The Going-to-the-Sun Road remains open between St. Mary and Logan Pass. It is closed between the foot of Lake McDonald (near Apgar) and Logan Pass. Apgar Village, Apgar Campground and Fish Creek campground remain open. Most other areas of the park are open.

Howe Ridge Fire in Glacier National Park
Howe Ridge Fire, August 12, 2018. NPS photo.
Howe Ridge Fire in Glacier National Park
Water scooping air tankers work the Howe Ridge Fire in Glacier National Park. Undated NPS photo.

 

Author: Bill Gabbert

After working full time in wildland fire for 33 years, he continues to learn, and strives to be a Student of Fire. Google+

2 thoughts on “Howe Ridge Fire burns thousands of acres in Glacier National Park”

  1. The fire behaviour is rather impressive given that it is burning in a fire scar from 2001.
    I was a part of the structural protection team that worked in the McDonald Lake subdivision during the 2001 Moose Fire. Even though the Moose was quite intense back then, Mother Nature has obviously done a nice job to re-grow a young forest over the last 17 seasons.

    I have always been impressed with Mother Nature’s ability to stir the pot while still being an effective ecosystem process.

  2. Thank you for being the only site to provide a simple map with a red circle around the fire area, not even the park service provides a map of the burn area. If only I could find one with all the fires in similar area’s that’s updated at least monthly.

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