GARDINER — An intense fire swept through a large part of the Gardiner business district on Tuesday.
Video from the scene shows buildings still burning hours after the fire started in the town that's the north entrance
to Yellowstone National Park.
Eyewitnesses say the fire started in the backroom of the Two Bit Saloon.
Those residents say grease in the kitchen caught fire and: “It blew up like crazy.”
The Yellowstone Raft Company is in the same building, it was one of the first neighboring buildings to catch fire.
Then Rosie’s Bistro and Rosie’s Pizzeria caught fire, followed by Red’s Blue Goose Saloon.
Next to the Blue Goose is the Yellowstone Perk/Gardiner Pharmacy, which is also a loss, but is still standing.
Residents say it’s all a huge loss to the community.
"I've always gone to that bar since I was a kid playing pool,” said Gardiner resident Triston Gibson. “Eating a sandwich, whatever. I mean now that today that this fire happened, it's taken a part of me away. I came up today for this reason alone, to watch my history burn to the ground. And I know the owners personally, and they're tore up about it just as much, if not more than me"
"It was like excruciatingly hot,” said Britny Meader from Park County. “You could feel it. It was like a big old bonfire. And there were tons of fire engines out here, I can't tell you how many out here just with their water pumps trying to contain the fire. People were being told to back up and move across the street. It was just crazy. And I know Gardiner is the north entrance of the park, so tons of tourists are coming through. And this is just a pretty big tragic incident since some of these buildings have been standing since the '50s."
The Park County Sheriff’s Office said crews tore down the Blue Goose to prevent the fire from spreading even more.
The saloon and raft company buildings are just rock walls now. Rosie’s was completely engulfed in flames last night and fire crews said it was only a matter of time before it falls too.
MTN News will be heading back to Gardiner on Wednesday and will have more on the fire.