News Department:

Missoula News:
Eric Whitney, News Director: 406-243-4075, @mtprnd

Edward O'Brien, Assistant News Director: 406-243-4065

Helena News:
Corin Cates-Carney, Capitol Reporter: 253-495-5193, @clccarney

Flathead News:
Nicky Ouellet, Flathead-area Reporter: 603-568-6155 or 406-730-2264, @nickydoesradio

A red flag warning means critical fire weather conditions are in the forecast.
National Weather Service

Updated 8:14 p.m., August 2, 2019

Mandatory evacuation notices are in place in the Eagle Canyon and Stickney Creek areas north of Craig because of the Eagle Canyon Fire, which is burning between 20 and 25 acres. 

The Lewis and Clark County Sheriff’s Office is giving evacuation notices to the following roads: Eagle Canyon Road, July Road, Lil’ Valley Road, Werner Drive, North Fork of Beaver Slide Road, Spring Drive, Cold Water Drive.

Evening Newscast 8-2-19

Aug 2, 2019

The cause of the North Hills fire was someone shooting at exploding targets.

The Type 2 incident management team that’s been managing the North Hills Fire was re-assigned at 6:00 p.m. to the Nevada Creek Fire, a lightning fire started mid-day yesterday on the Powel-Lewis and Clark county line about 20 miles north of Elliston.

A new very active fire, the Black Diamond Fire, is burning southeast of the Highway 200 - Highway 279 junction in the Helena-Lewis and Clark National Forest.

A firefighter working on the Beeskove Fire in the Rattlesnake Recreation Are near Missoula.
Lolo National Forest

Updated 5:19 p.m., August 1, 2019

Lightning near the south end of the Bitterroot National Forest Wednesday night has sparked a one-tenth acre fire west of Hamilton in the Canyon Creek drainage next to Blodgett Canyon.

Forest Service spokesperson Tod McKay says a few firefighters have been working on the blaze near Barley Creek this afternoon; helicopters have also made water bucket drops.

Evening Newscast 8-1-19

Aug 1, 2019

Last night's lightning storms have firefighters around Helena, Missoula and Hamilton chasing reports of smoke and new fires in area forests.

Eight new fire starts were reported north of Helena today, while evacuation orders were lifted for the North Hills fire, the largest fire burning in the area.

Lightning near the south end of the Bitterroot National Forest last night has sparked a one-tenth acre fire west of Hamilton in the Canyon Creek drainage next to Blodgett Canyon.

Evening Newscast 7-31-19

Jul 31, 2019

A new fire has started roughly four miles south of Wise River in the Beaverhead National Forest.

Officials are closely watching a small fire started by lightning last night in the south end of the Bitterroot National Forest.

Southwest and a portion of central Montana are under a National Weather Service red flag warning through nine tonight.

Evening Newscast 07-30-19

Jul 30, 2019

Fire season is in full swing for Montana.

A former Miles City high school athletic trainer who admitted to coercing boys into sexual abuse under the guise of improving their athletic performance has been sentenced to 12 years in federal prison.

An 18-year-old girl from the Fort Belknap Indian Reservation was declared missing today.

A view of the North Hills Fire on the morning of July 28, 2019.

There’s a public meeting about the North Hills Fire being held at this hour at the Helena Valley Community Center. That fire, first reported Friday afternoon, quickly blew up to more than 4,000 acres, causing evacuation orders to be issued for an estimated 400 homes.

Among the evacuees is Erin Vang, who left her home Saturday quickly.

Evening Newscast 07-29-19

Jul 29, 2019

So far, the predicted high winds forecast for the Helena area have not materialized, making things a little easier for more than 300 firefighters battling the North Hills' fire about nine miles northeast of town.

The latest update on the Beeskove fire just outside Missoula has it at 182 acres and 0% contained.

Police in Medford, Oregon, say Montana authorities have found a body believed to be that of a missing Oregon child.

A helicopter drops water on the Beeskove fire north of Missoula July 26, 2019.
Eric Whitney / Montana Public Radio

Updated 10:45 p.m. July 26, 2019.

The Lewis and Clark County Sheriffs Office has ordered evacuations near Helena due to growing danger from the North Hills Fire. Residents near the intersection of Snowdrift and Ferry, east to Hauser Dam Road are ordered to evacuate the area.

Evening Newscast 07-26-19

Jul 26, 2019

The incident commander on the wildfire burning about six miles north of Missoula says he’s bracing for some weather-related challenges this weekend.

The Moss Ranch fire on the Flathead Indian Reservation has grown to 450-acres in a matter of days.