Last updated: September 7, 2016
Today's Key Points
- Due to recent rains, fire restrictions in Yellowstone National Park will move from Stage 2 to Stage 1 at noon today. Details about these restrictions can be found in today's news release.
- Warm days with breezy afternoons and low relative humidity are causing light fuels to dry out rapidly. Heavier fuels, such as downed logs, did not absorb much moisture from recent rains and remain dry enough to hold and carry a fire.
- On the Maple Fire, isolated heat in downed logs has resulted in creeping and smoldering fire in grass and duff. The east side of the fire has cooled and is no longer threatening Madison Junction or Norris. Sprinklers and hoses are being removed from structures and campgrounds in those areas. The closed area surrounding the Maple Fire has been reduced in size.
- Firefighters are planning to conduct burnout operations on the Maple Fire to provide a fuel break east of the Madison River. Operations could begin as early as tomorrow, depending on suitable fuel moisture levels and weather conditions.
- A community meeting for the Maple Fire will be held at the LDS church, 245 Faithful Street, West Yellowstone, MT at 7:30 pm on Thursday.
- On the Buffalo Fire today, firefighters are using minimum-impact suppression techniques as they work in the Slough Creek area. The fire has not crossed the Slough Creek Trail.
- The Fawn, Central, and Jasper fires are being monitored.
- While larger fuels such as dead and downed trees continue to smolder, smoke will not be a significant factor in today's air quality. Today's prediction is for GOOD air quality throughout the area.
- All entrances to Yellowstone National Park are open.
- Park visitor centers, concession-operated services, and businesses in surrounding communities remain open.
- The Bakers Hole area of the Madison River is open. Anticipate brief closures starting September 8 during a planned burnout operation.
- The Harlequin Lake and Purple Mountain trails have reopened.
- Mount Holmes, Grizzly Lake, Winter Creek, and Trilobite Lake trails are now outside the closure area for the fire. However, traiheads remain closed due to road construction. Contact the Backcountry Office at 307-344-2160 for information on accessing these trails.
- The Slough Creek Campground and surrounding area are closed due to the Buffalo Fire.
- The Mary Mountain Trail is closed due to the Central Fire.
- Visit the links below for the full list and maps of current backcountry campsite, trail, and road closures.
Stage 1 Fire Restrictions Are In Effect. Charcoal and wood fires are prohibited in backcountry campsites. Visit our Current Fire Activity page for more information.
Maple Fire: 41,136 acres (no increase since yesterday) Start Date: August 8, 2016 Cause: Lightning
Location: approx. 3.29 mi NE of West Yellowstone (Intersection of US HWY 20 &287), 3.57 mi SW of Mount Holmes Lookout, 1.78 mi from Madison Junction.
The east side of the fire has cooled and is no longer threatening Madison Junction or Norris. Fire crews have established control lines from the Transfer Station north to Gneiss Creek and to the ridge top south of Campanula Creek. Engines and crews continue to patrol the fire's edge.
Buffalo Fire: 10,787 acres (no increase since yesterday) Start Date: August 13, 2016 Cause: Lightning
Location: approximately 3 mi NE of Tower Junction and 1.6 mi S of the park boundary.
Firefighters continue to work on the east side of this fire. The east side of the Buffalo Fire can sometimes be seen on the Mount Washburn Fire Lookout –Northeast Webcam at https://go.nps.gov/YellowstoneWebcams.
Fawn Fire: 2,684 (no increase since yesterday) Start Date: August 4, 2016 Cause: Lightning
Location: W of Fawn Pass, approximately 8.5 mi W of Mammoth Hot Springs, 16 mi NE of West Yellowstone, 10 miles SW of Gardiner, and 27 mi SE of Big Sky.
The Fawn Fire will be unstaffed for the immediate future. Preparations for structure protection remain in place. The fire will continue to be monitored by air.
Central Fire: 1,350 acres (no increase since yesterday) Start Date: August 26, 2016 Cause: Lightning
Location: a remote area, approximately 7 mi W of Lake developed area and 2 mi S of Hayden Valley
The Central Fire remains unstaffed. It will continue to be monitored by air. The fire continues to creep to the west and north into heavier timber. The Central Fire can sometimes be seen on the Mount Washburn Fire Lookout –South Webcam at https://go.nps.gov/YellowstoneWebcams.
Jasper Fire: 1 acre (no increase since yesterday) Start Date: September 4, 2016 Cause: Lightning
Location: 6 miles E of Tower Junction near Specimen Ridge.
The Jasper Fire is burning in a small group of trees and presents no imminent threat to park facilities. It is unstaffed and will be monitored. Fire managers do not anticipate any closures since this fire is burning in a remote area.
Visit our Current Fire Activity page for more information.