LIBBY — The fire danger is being hiked once again in parts of Lincoln County.
Interagency fire managers have announced Stage I Fire Restrictions will go into effect at 12:01 a.m. on Saturday on the Kootenai National Forest, Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation Libby Unit, and Lincoln County lands.
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Fire managers note that fireworks are prohibited on National Forest lands, state forests, state parks, and state recreation areas.
Federal, State, and Private jurisdictions implementing restrictions include:
- Kootenai National Forest
- Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation, Libby Unit
- State Land & Private Classified Forested Land within Lincoln County
- Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks, Region 1 within the Kootenai National Forest boundary
- Lincoln County - Stimson Private Timber Company Lands. Stimson is not allowing any fires on their lands.
- Flathead Ridge Ranch is not allowing any fires on their lands.
- Stoltze Timber Company Lands are not allowing any fires on their lands currently.
Fire managers note Stage I Fire Restrictions are intended to reduce fire risk and prevent wildfires during periods of high to extreme danger by decreasing potential sources of ignition.
A news release notes that each year, 70 to 80% of wildfires are human-caused and this summer the trend has continued.
Northwest Montana is currently experiencing drought conditions including extremely dry forest fuels; forecasts of temperatures above normal accompanied by low humidity, wind, and minimal precipitation.
There is also concern about available firefighting resources.
Stage I Fire Restrictions Prohibit:
- Building, maintaining, attending, or using a fire, campfire, or stove fire unless noted within the exempted areas below.
- EXCEPTION: Persons using a fire solely fueled by liquid petroleum or LPG fuels that can be turned on and off. Such devices can only be used in an area that is barren or cleared of all overhead and surrounding flammable materials within three-feet of the device.
- Smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle or building, a developed recreation site, or while stopped in an area at least three feet in diameter that is barren or cleared of all flammable materials.
Campfires are permitted in the following exempted developed recreation areas on the Kootenai National Forest within metal or concrete fire rings:
- Cabinet Ranger District
- Libby Ranger District
- Big Eddy Campground
- Big Creek Baldy Lookout
- Bull River Campground
- Fairview Ranger Station
- Bull River Guard Station
- Howard Lake Campground
- Gem Peak Lookout
- Koocanusa Marina
- Jackpine Flats Campground
- Lake Creek Campground
- Marten Creek Campground
- Loon Lake Campground
- Minton Peak Lookout
- McGillvray Campground and Day Area North Shore Campground
- McGregor Lake Campground
- Six Peak Lookout Meadow Peak Lookout
- Triangle Pond Campground
- Pleasant Valley Campground
- Willow Creek Campground
- Sylvan Lake Campground
- Timberlane Campground
- Rexford Fortine Ranger District
- Three Rivers Ranger District
- Abayance Bay Marina
- Bad Medicine Campground
- Ant Flat Historic Ranger Station
- Caribou Campground
- Big Therriault Campground
- Dorr Skeels Recreation Site
- Birch Creek Recreation Area
- Garver Mountain Lookout
- Camp 32 Campground
- Kilbrennan Lake Campground
- Clarence Guard Station (metal fire ring only)
- Mt. Baldy Buckhorn Lookout
- Grave Creek Campground
- Pete Creek Campground
- Horse Camp Redtop Campground
- Little Therriault Campground
- Ross Creek Picnic Area
- McGuire Mountain Lookout
- Spar Lake Campground
- Murphy Lake Campground
- Upper Ford Ranger Station
- North Dickey Lake Campground
- Whitetail Campground
- Peck Gulch Campground
- Yaak Falls Campground
- Rexford Bench Campground
- Yaak Mountain Lookout
- Rocky Gorge Campground
- Yaak River Campground
- South Dickey Lake Day Area
- Weasel Cabin
- Weasel Lake
- Webb Mountain Lookout
- Dispersed sites along Grave Creek Road System north of Birch Creek Recreation Area