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Highway 200 Complex fires at 20,600 acres, public meeting set - KBZK.com | Continuous News | Bozeman, Montana

Highway 200 Complex fires at 20,600 acres, public meeting set

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THOMPSON FALLS - The Highway 200 Complex fires near Thompson Falls and Plains have consumed over 20,600 acres.

 Approximately 510 residences are threatened throughout the Complex and the Sheep Gap fire east of Plains remains the biggest concern.

The mandatory evacuations near the Sheep Gap fire have been lifted and those residents are now in pre-evacuation warning.

The Complex is made up of the Sheep Creek, Deep Creek, Cub Creek, Miller Creek and Reader fires.

A community meeting to discuss the fires will be held on Saturday at 7 p.m. on Saturday in the Plains High School Gym.


Sheep Gap – 29% Contained – 11,856 acres: On the Sheep Gap, mandatory evacuations were lifted as of 8 AM on Sept 8th. However, 137 residences remain in pre-evacuation warnings and if conditions worsen, evacuations may be re-initiated by the Sanders County Sheriff’s Office. Heavy equipment has been used on the north side and in Swamp Creek in order to develop a shaded fuels break. A dozer line has also been developed as a structure protection line. Firefighters continue to implement control actions and provide structure protection along the contingency lines located north, east, and south of the fire.

Deep Creek – 4,814 acres: As weather allows, the primary objective is to implement a burn-out operation to remove unburned fuel between the main fire and the established firelines. Dozer line and hand line are established in preparation for this activity. An existing hose-lay, which is a combination of hose strung along fireline, are also being used to wet the areas adjacent to firelines and prevent spot fires from wind-driven embers.

Cub Creek – 3,199 acres: As resources are being freed up from the Reader Fires, they are being reassigned to the Cub fire in preparation for today’s windy conditions. Firefighters have been working in several locations to the east of this fire to construct indirect fire lines and dozer lines using heavy equipment and crews. These lines were scouted and placed in locations where the probability of success is highest. As winds increase, the fire is expected to continue growth south toward the Clear Creek drainage.

Reader Fires – 80% Contained - 152 acres (total): The Reader and Reader 2 fires are being managed conjointly due to their close proximity. Mop-up activities continue on the Reader Fires in addition to the efforts to improve existing containment line.

Miller Creek – 597 acres: This fire continues to be unstaffed due to limited resources but is being monitored for fire growth.

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