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Contact: Melissa Wilson, 406-888-7895
WEST GLACIER, MONT. – Officials at Glacier National Park report that there is a wildland fire in the park’s Red Eagle drainage. The fire is estimated at 250 acres. It was first reported at 1:18 p.m. this afternoon after smoke was seen from the St. Mary’s visitor center.
The fire has prompted the closure of the Red Eagle Lake Trail from the trailhead to Triple Divide Pass, and the backcountry campgrounds at the head and foot of the lake.
Park fire managers have ordered resources to help suppress this fire. The park’s wildland fire crew and fire engine, six smokejumpers from Missoula, and three single engine air tankers (using retardant) are currently working on the fire. Additional resources, including two Type I and Type II crews, a medium helicopter, and a heavy helicopter, were requested. However, due to resource constraints throughout the Pacific Northwest, additional resources are not currently available; they will arrive, as soon as it is practical. At present, there is a Type III incident commander from Alaska.
The park has issued a voluntary evacuation notice for the Saint Mary townsite. This notice is intended to encourage local residents and visitors to consider the steps they would take in the event that conditions change and an evacuation become necessary.
Smoke from the fire can be seen from St. Mary and can be seen from points along the Going-to-the-Sun Road. The St. Mary webcam is online at: http://www.nps.gov/glac/webcams/smcam.htm.