THOMPSON FALLS - The Bull Gin Complex of fires northeast of Heron in Sanders County has grown to 1,418 acres.
The Complex is comprised of the Government Fire, the Billiard Fire, and the Isabella Lake Fire.
- Government Fire: 527 acres (approximately 2 miles NE of Noxon, MT)
- Billiard Fire: 684 acres (approximately 2 miles NE of Heron, MT)
- Isabella Lake Fire: 207 acres (Cabinet Mountains Wilderness)
Fire managers report the Government Fire grew 200 acres on Wednesday with growth occurring on the north and west sides of the fire. Fire activity increased around 1 p.m. and actively backed down towards Government Creek approaching the 150 Road. Due to fire activity and winds, firefighters and heavy equipment were pulled from the west side of the fire until they could safely re-engage.
The Billiard Fire grew 100 acres Wednesday on the west side and reached the 2209 road. Interior burning occurred as well; the strip of unburned fuels was consumed creating a contiguous fire area, according to the Thursday update.
Isabella Lake Fire
Minimal growth of less than 50 acres has occurred over the past two days at the Isabella Lake Fire. The blaze is burning in the Cabinet Mountains Wilderness between the East Fork of Bull River and Isabella Creek, west of Isabella Lake and north of Saint Paul Lake. The fire remains unstaffed and monitored from the air.
Area, road, and trail closures are in place for the Government Fire, Isabella Lake Fire, and Billiard Fire to provide for public safety and firefighting operations. Information regarding closures can be found on the Kootenai National Forest website.
A public meeting to discuss the Bull Gin Complex will be held at 7 p.m. on Thursday at the Noxon Volunteer Fire Department.
An emergency declaration has been issued by the Sanders County Commission due to area wildfires.