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

Evacuations are in effect due to the Elmo Fire

The Elmo Fire as seen from Highway 93 between the towns of Elmo and Dayton, MT on the afternoon of August 1, 2022.
Luke O'Connell
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The Elmo Fire as seen from Highway 93 between the towns of Elmo and Dayton, MT on the afternoon of August 1, 2022.

New evacuations orders were issued Monday afternoon for The Elmo Fire near the western shores of Flathead Lake, which had grown to nearly 13,000 acres and was zero percent contained as of firefighters' most recent update Monday morning.


Elmo Fire closures and evacuation notices
Updated at 4:45 p.m., August 07, 2022

From the Lake County Sheriff’s Office Sunday morning:

  • Evacuation orders have been lifted for residents along Lake Mary Ronan Road (Hwy 352) west of Dayton Creek Road. This area will remain under pre-evacuation warning and open to residents and guests only.

  • Camp Tuffit/West Shore Road remains under evacuation order and is closed to all traffic.

  • Residents of Chief Cliff Lane, Black Lake Road, Big Meadows Road, and Dayton Creek Road remain under pre-evacuation warning and open to residents only.

Red Cross evacuation centers have been established at Somers Middle School and Polson High School. Call 1-800-272-6668 for information.


According to Lake County Sheriff office dispatch, the latest evacuations include Lake Mary Ronan Road, Black Lake Road and the surrounding areas.

A public meeting was held Monday evening at the Elmo Pow Wow Grounds to discuss the latest conditions and evacuation status.

The fire sparked off Highway 28 Friday evening and spread northwest toward Elmo and Dayton.

The blaze burned grasslands parched by days of 90 to 100 degree temperatures and has made its way into timberland.

A Red Flag warning is in effect over the fire area, meaning fire could continue to spread quickly. West and southwest winds with gusts up to 35 miles per hour are expected.

The Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes Division of Fire and other local rural fire departments responded to the fire. Management has been handed off to a type II incident command team.

Evacuation orders were issued for nearly three-dozen homes this weekend, according to CSKT Division of Fire, but those were rescinded by Saturday afternoon.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

Fireline probes the causes and consequences of the increasingly devastating wildfires burning in the U.S. It taps into the experience of firefighters, tribal land managers, climate scientists and more to understand how we got here and where we're going.