Crews controlled a small fire that broke out in Big Sky Thursday afternoon after a lone tree caught fire near the South Fork Loop trail.
The Big Sky Fire Department responded at around 4 p.m. on Thursday to a report of a single tree on fire and found a lone tree in flames about 150 yards from the South Fork Loop trail, according to Dustin Tetrault, deputy chief. Big Sky Fire Department firefighters. The crews immediately asked for mutual aid for a forest fire.
Crews removed fire hoses from some engines and pumped water up the shaft, Tetrault said. They quickly discovered that the embers of the 1 acre blaze were starting other point fires in nearby trees.
“When it’s in a tree, it’s tough,” Tetrault said. “There’s not really much you can do. “
Resources from various agencies worked to put out the blaze until it was officially brought under control at 6 p.m., according to a press release from the Big Sky Fire Department.
Big Sky, Yellowstone Club Fire and US Forest Service firefighters responded to the incident with deputies from the Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office. No evacuation was ordered, but parts of Aspen Leaf Drive and Gray Drake Road were closed during the response.
The blaze was likely man-made, but an official cause is under investigation, Tetrault said. The Forest Service teams have taken command of the fire and are staying in the area to make sure there are no other hot spots.
The Big Sky Fire Department reminded the public in a press release that the amount of moisture in the trees is at August’s level, although the grasses may appear green. A prolonged drought dries up fuels and establishes an early fire season, according to the department.
“We need to be diligent in minimizing unnecessary ignitions this year, as this is just a glimpse of the volatility of a fire season for us,” officials wrote.