Storm Hill fire near Hill City, South Dakota

Above: Storm Hill Fire near Hill City, South Dakota. Photo at 4:40 p.m. April 23, 2016 by Jim Burk, SDWF.

(UPDATED at 9:22 a.m. MDT April 25, 2016)

The Storm Hill Fire just east of Hill City, South Dakota has had a fireline around it since early Sunday morning, and as of Monday morning firefighters have “completed a 30-foot security patrol line around all of the fire”. This easily meets the National Wildfire Coordinating Group’s definition of “contained”. However, the incident commander is calling it “75 percent contained”. We generally ignore the containment numbers publicized by incident commanders for this reason.

More accurate mapping determined that the fire has burned 193 acres of public and private lands.


(Originally published at 7:05 a.m. MDT April 24, 2016)

The Storm Hill Fire has burned approximately 100 acres near the sawmill east of Hill City, South Dakota. After it was reported Saturday afternoon at 2:05 it burned onto private land and the Black Hills National Forest.

Storm Hill Fire
Storm Hill Fire April 23, 2016. Photo by Jim Burk, SDWF.

Firefighters completed a burnout operation at 12:30 Sunday morning in fuels that included bug-killed trees. At that time firelines had been established on the east, south and northwest sides.

By Sunday morning at 6:30 a line had been constructed around the entire fire but the Incident Commander was only calling it 50 percent contained.

Highway 385, a primary highway in the Black Hills, was closed, but reopened at 2:30 a.m. on Sunday.

Storm Hill Fire
Storm Hill Fire April 23 by Jim Burk, SDWF.
Storm Hill Fire
Storm Hill Fire near MItchell Lake just off Highway 385 at 11:15 p.m. April 23.  Photo by Rob Lehmann, SDWF.

Ben Carstens sent us some excellent photos of the fire.