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Wildfire, fire management and air quality news for western Montana and the Northern Rockies.

July Fire Evacuation Ends But Statewide Wildfire Threat High

July Fire

A mixed bag of news today from the July fire burning south of the Fort Belknap Reservation in Phillips County. 

First, the good: the mandatory evacuation order issued earlier this week for the Landusky area ended Saturday morning. That evacuation affected about 30 residents who are now back home. 

Less encouraging is that the July fire continues to grow. It's now estimated to have burned 10, 400 acres, with 40-percent of its perimeter contained. Officials think that fire started July 3rd and is burning in grasses and mixed timber. Firefighters and resources continue to pour into the incident.

A public meeting on the July fire is scheduled for 5 p.m. Saturday at the Hays-Lodgepole high school.

Meanwhile, Saturday is going to be another extremely hot and dry day. Fire warnings and restrictionsare posted throughout Montana.
In short, if you plan on working or recreating in the outdoors be immensely careful with any possible ignition source, including dragging trailer chains, campfires (drowned and stirred until completely cold to the touch), hot engines in tall grass and powertools/farm machinery that could spark against rocks. 

Edward O’Brien first landed at Montana Public Radio three decades ago as a news intern while attending the UM School of Journalism. He covers a wide range of stories from around the state.  
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