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Magpie Fire Continues to Burn in Yellowstone Backcountry

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Date: August 14, 2006
Contact: Nash, (307) 344-2010
Contact: Vallie, (307) 344-2012

A frontal passage on Sunday resulted in increased fire activity on the Magpie Fire in Yellowstone National Park. It was mapped late last week at 1,368 acres.  Fire managers say it grew significantly on Sunday. The fire will be remapped late Monday afternoon and a new acreage figure will be available on Tuesday.

The Magpie Fire is burning in a mature lodgepole pine forest, surrounded by an area which was burned in 1988. It is being monitored on the ground, from lookout towers and by over flights. The lightning-caused fire has been burning for a month in a remote area seven miles east of Madison Junction. 

While the fire danger in Yellowstone National Park remains high, there are no fire restrictions in effect. Some hiking trails near the Magpie Fire remain closed. All visitor services, park entrances and roads are open. 

The only impact the Magpie Fire is expected to have on visitors and park employees, is some increased smoke. This could cause a light haze over portions of the park. Smoke may also settle at times in low lying areas.

Yellowstone National Park exists in part to protect nature at work.  Fire is an essential part of the park’s dynamic, natural process of ecological change and rejuvenation.  The Magpie Fire is being managed as a Wildland Fire Use for Resource Benefits, since it benefits the ecosystem and doesn’t pose a threat to people or property. Firefighters aggressively work to put out all human-caused fires and any naturally occurring fires when they threaten people or the park’s developed areas.

There are two other fires currently burning in the park. Both the Alice Fire northeast of Fishing Bridge, and the Bison Peak Fire northeast of Tower Junction are reported at just one-tenth of an acre in size.

The Mount Washburn Fire Lookout Web Cam is temporarily out of service. Updated information on fire activity in Yellowstone National Park is posted to the Wildland Fire section of the park web site at http://www.nps.gov/yell/technical/fire and the InciWeb Incident Information System web site at http://inciweb.org.

Did You Know?

Upper Geyser Basin Hydrothermal Features on a Winter Day.

Yellowstone contains approximately one-half of the world’s hydrothermal features. There are over 10,000 hydrothermal features, including over 300 geysers, in the park.