Fires west and east of Missoula keep growing


Officers with the Montana Highway Patrol and Missoula County Sheriff direct drivers away from a small fire startup Tuesday near the Blue Mountain area.

Montana Highway Patrol was set up on Cochise Drive following a small fire startup in the Hayes Creek area on Tuesday afternoon. 

Rob Chaney

Wednesday’s blue skies notwithstanding, wildfire activity revved up around Missoula in the surrounding national forests and close to home.

A suspected lighting strike on Blue Mountain along Missoula’s southwest edge Tuesday afternoon succumbed to quick response by Missoula Rural Fire and Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation firefighters before it burned much more than a tenth of an acre.

But the Dry Cabin Fire that started in the Scapegoat Wilderness 20 miles north of Ovando on Sunday grew from 10 acres

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