Monday, September 20, 2021

Highway 35 reopens through Boulder 2700 Fire

Staff Report | August 12, 2021 6:40 AM

A stretch of Montana 35 east of Polson was reopened Wednesday to residents previously displaced by the Boulder 2700 Fire.

The Lake County Sheriff's Office also revised the evacuation status for residents between mile markers 9 and 11. As of Wednesday morning, residents in the area may return home but should be prepared to leave at a moment's notice because of ongoing fire danger.

The speed limit on the highway is reduced to 35 mph between mile markers 6 and 13 for public and firefighter safety.

The Montana Department of Transportation will escort local traffic along a 2-mile stretch of the highway with pilot cars from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Drivers should be aware of hazards in the fire area, including fire-suppression and tree-felling activities, rolling rocks and debris, smoke, fire engines, aircraft and utility vehicles.

Officials ask that drivers not stop in the fire zone.

Mission Valley Power and CenturyLink continued to restore power and internet to the area. Power could be intermittent as infrastructure repair and replacement work continues.

An update on InciWeb late Wednesday listed the Boulder Fire at 2,072 acres with 36% containment and 248 personnel on scene.

"Weather is getting hotter and drier," the report states. "However, with minimal pockets of heat, fire behavior is expected to be minimal with continued smoldering."