Update: September 15, 2012 @ 9 a.m.
Contact: Fire Information: 406-823-6079
Karen Tuscano 406-223-2028
FIRE NAME: Pine Creek
DATE OF DETECTION: August 29, 2012
CAUSE: Human (under investigation)
CURRENT SIZE: 8,509 acres
LOCATION: Pine Creek on the east side of Paradise Valley
AGENCY: Park County, Gallatin National Forest
IMT: Type III Incident Management Team, Greg Juvan, IC
**A community information meeting for the Pine Creek Fire is scheduled for 3:00 p.m. today, September 15, 2012, at the Pine Creek Methodist Church.**
YESTERDAY’S ACTIVITY: Calm winds and cloud cover in the afternoon helped to keep fire activity minimal yesterday, despite the very low relative humidity of 6% and warm temperature. Crews and engines continued putting out hot spots that they could safely access in the Barney Creek area, and near the Pine Creek Campground and trail.
TODAY’S WEATHER AND PLANNED ACTIVITY: Firefighters are faced with challenging weather conditions again today with the warm temperatures, very low relative humidity, and an unstable atmosphere that are forecast for the fire area. The high is expected to reach 80 degrees, with a minimum relative humidity of 8%. Winds are forecast to be out of the west at 5-10 mph, and gusts could reach 15-20 mph for a short time this afternoon.
In the North Fork of Deep Creek, firefighters will monitor the fire activity that has already picked up early this morning, and use helicopter water drops as needed. Firefighters will continue mopping up hot spots in the Pine Creek Campground and along the lower part of Pine Creek trail. Rehabilitation of fireline that is no longer needed will resume again today.
**There will be a community information meeting today, September 15, 2012, at 3:00 p.m. at the Pine Creek Methodist Church. People are encouraged to plan ahead for the limited parking space available, by carpooling or walking to the church. Format will consist of multi-agency briefings, and additional information regarding the long term plan for the fire. Rehabilitation and recovery information will be available for those affected by the fire. For those unable to attend the community meeting, a booth will be available at the Livingston Farmer’s Market on Wednesday evening to provide similar information.**
PERSONNEL AND RESOURCES ON THE FIRE: There are approximately 100 personnel assigned, including 3 crews, 3 engines, 1 water tender and 2 helicopters.
SPECIAL MESSAGES & OTHER INFORMATION: Fuels in the area are extremely dry and receptive to burning. People who are interested in viewing the fire are encouraged to use Mallard’s Rest fishing access site on Highway 89, and refrain from stopping on East River Road which can cause serious safety hazards. Loch Leven fishing access site on the Yellowstone River is now the location of the fire’s Incident Command Post and is closed to the public.
For fire recovery and rehabilitation information, please contact the Park County DES office at 222-4190.
**Park County is providing a manned roll off station that has been set up just north of the Pine Creek Cafe on East River Road. The use of the boxes is free of charge to the people in the area cleaning up rubble on their property from the Pine Creek Fire. All food items must be taken to the Divide Road green boxes. One roll off will be for metal, wood, and appliances. Another box will be for items that can blow away, and they will need to be bagged before thrown onto the roll off. This location will be open 7 days a week from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. until further notice. Check www.parkcounty.org for updates about this service.**
All pre-evacuation notices associated with the Pine Creek Fire have been lifted. The fire will continue to burn until it receives significant moisture, but fire and Park County officials feel that the risk of the fire impacting residents has decreased. People should expect to see smoke coming from the fire area for the next few weeks.
People are urged to travel slowly and cautiously with the increased fire traffic during the early morning and early evening hours, and school buses on the roads. Be sure to obey all traffic signs and drive defensively.
Residents should be aware that helicopters could still be flying overhead, as they are assisting firefighters on the ground.
A temporary flight restriction (TFR) is in place over the fire area in order to safeguard aerial fire operations.
Roads closed to travel by the general public include Deep Creek Road and Luccock Park Road.
The area closure on the Gallatin National Forest is still in effect. The Pine Creek Campground and Trailhead will be closed for the remainder of the year.
A Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER) team has begun assessing rehabilitation efforts on private land, and will be working on the National Forest in the coming weeks.
For further information, go to www.inciweb.org.
Visit the Park County DES website at www.parkcounty.org