Although the official end of fire season doesn't kick in until the end of September, there is good news on the firefighting front in Missoula.

"Looking at the fuels condition and the weather, and what we saw last week and expect to see this week, we will drop the fire danger to moderate," said Montana DNRC spokeswoman Cindy Super. "This is pretty typical for fall. We see things start to settle down, and we get this rain."

Although the weather change may be typical, fire season stretched out much longer last year. Locally, this fire season has been especially intense in recent months.

"This year, a lot of our fire activity was really centered on the Missoula area, so a lot of us in this area feel like we never got a break," Super said. "It's been a long fire season, but this week is very promising."

The drop in the fire danger level means that seasonal burning can begin. Those with a prescribed wild or agricultural burn permit can begin burning at 9 a.m. tomorrow, September 24.