Firefighters are racing to control multiple lightning caused wildfires in southcentral and southeast Montana before gusty winds and warm temperatures are expected to descend on the region tomorrow Thursday.
Rodney Dresbach, Rosebud County’s fire chief, reports the Graveyard Creek Fire burning 24 miles southeast of Forsyth is burning out of control and may have grown beyond the initial estimate of 99 acres since it was first reported this morning. Dresbach said an air tanker is making aerial retardant drops on the lightning caused fire burning in a mix of timber and grass.
Dresbach says firefighters should have two other blazes near Forsyth contained by Wednesday evening. Another two large fires in Treasure County that started this morning have also been contained.
The National Weather Service has the eastern two-thirds of Montana under a red flag warning from 9 a.m. through 9 p.m. Thursday. A red flag warning means critical fire weather conditions of strong gusty winds, low relative humidity and warm temperatures that could cause fires to grow and quickly spread.
And the Rocky Mountain Front in northwest Montana has a high wind watch Thursday afternoon through Thursday night, with gusty west winds up to 65 mph, which could blow down tree limbs and power lines.