Progress Continues at Bitterroot’s Observation Forest Fire
The Observation forest fire on the Bitterroot National Forest is now 15 percent contained, according to Monday morning's update from the Northern Rockies Incident Management Team.
Doug Turman's crew reports the fire size at 1,348 acres, with growth on the north end near Hayes Creek and Camas Creek. Heavy equipment has been working on a contingency line near Camas Creek, with the active fire threatening an earlier established retardant line. Helicopters are now dropping more retardant than water on hot spots and over inaccessible areas. Ground crews continue to build line on the east side of the blaze.
Firefighters are watching the wind speeds, which have been increasing in the area. A helispot, safety zone and spike camp are planned for the northwest flank, depending on the wind.
Stage I evacuation warnings are still in effect, and Lost Horse Road and Lick Creek Road remain closed.
Over 500 people are on the fire, along with eight aircraft, 21 engines and 15 dozers. The fire is 10 miles southwest of Hamilton on the Darby Ranger District.