Officials say more hot weather is on its way and wildfire risks remain high
This week’s rain and cool temperatures are a welcome relief from the recent heat and tinder dry conditions, but it won't last long. More seasonally hot weather is just around the corner and the potential for new wildfires to start remains high.
Steady rain fell Monday over the River Road East fire that exploded to life late last week. According to the Sanders County Ledger, at least seven residences and 27 structures burned in the fire near the western Montana community of Paradise.
While the rain and cooler temperatures won’t extinguish that 17,000-acre wildfire, it is giving firefighters an opportunity to directly attack the flames.
Montana Department of Natural Resources Fire Management Officer Karl Nikoleyczik said the precipitation is certainly not a wildfire season-ending event.
“We’ve got a high-pressure system building into the weekend to get us up into the high 80s, low 90s, potentially. There’s a chance for some scattered thunderstorms building as well that could bring potential lightning, so we’re not out of the woods quite yet,” Nikoleyczik said.
Recreationists are reminded to fully extinguish their campfires.
Fire officials said they will continue to aggressively attack new fire starts whenever possible until the snow flies.