ELMO - The Niarada Fire 12 miles west of Elmo has burned 18,366 acres with containment increasing from 7% to 25% as of Tuesday morning.
The Lake County Sheriff's Office downgraded people in evacuation status to a pre-evacuation warning on Monday, Aug. 7, 2023. The change means people can return home.
Earlier on Monday the Flathead County Sheriff's Office also announced changes in evacuations near the Niarada Fire.
The remainder of the town of Elmo is in ready status. Click here to sign up for emergency alerts.
A community meeting to discuss the Big Knife, Niarada, and Mill Pocket fires on Wednesday, Aug. 9 at 6 p.m. at the Elmo Community Center. The meeting will be broadcast live on the CSKT Division of Fire Facebook page.
Another community meeting has been planned for Thursday, Aug. 10, at 6 p.m. at the Arlee Community Center. The meeting will broadcast live on the CSKT Divison of Fire Facebook page.
Fire managers report that firelines around the northern perimeter continue to hold, and crews along Cromwell Creek Road have made progress mopping up. However, heavy fuels and steep terrain continue hampering efforts along the fire’s eastern and southeastern edge.
Structure protection crews are continuing to work outside Elmo towards Big Arm, and a night shift helps keep watch over changing conditions and fire behavior.
Additionally, firefighters working the Mill Pocket Fire continue to improve constructed firelines, and aerial resources are helping cool hotspots in the steep slopes along the fire’s northwestern edge.
Drivers are urged to use extreme caution when driving on Montana Highway 28 as firefighters and equipment are still working in the area.
The Niarada Fire was sparked by lightning on July 30, 2023, after a storm went through the area.
There are 152 people assigned to the blazes.