The unusually dry, warm and windy weather that the Rocky Mountain Front has experienced so far this fall has kept the Moose Ridge and Sheep Mountain fires active. Fortunately, the cooler and shorter days of autumn have helped to moderate fire conditions sufficiently to allow a limited relaxation of some fire area closures while still providing for public safety.

Modifications to the current fire related closures and travel access went into effect on Thursday, October 22 and will provide some additional opportunities for trail use, camping and hunting within areas impacted by fire.

Travel from Mortimer Trailhead will only be allowed from midnight through 10:00 am each day. Groups arriving at trailhead after 10:00 am may be required to wait until the following day to depart.

THE FOLLOWING TRAILS ARE OPEN FOR TIME LIMITED TRAVEL ONLY FROM MIDNIGHT THROUGH NOON DAILY:●North Fork Sun River Trail #201 (south of Circle Creek and west of Big George Creek)●South Fork Sun River Trail #202 (from Trail #201 to Trail #265)●Low Water South Fork Sun Trail #265 (from Trail #202 to north of Trail #241)●North Fork Sun Cut Across #272●Moose-Furman Trail #261 (from Trail #272 north to junction with Circle Creek Trail #231)●Elk Hill Trail #268 (south of Elk Hill)

OPEN AREAS FOR CAMPING AND HUNTING:●Big George drainage●Patrick’s Basin and Lange Creek (above the falls)●Pretty Prairie area●Windfall Creek area●Cabin Creek area and north

AREAS CLOSED TO ALL ACCESS AND TRAVEL:●Arsenic Creek drainage●Scattering Springs (off trail)●Elephant Head and Neal Creek●Closed fire area west of Sun River (south of Rock Cr. north of Goat Cr.)

Weather and fire conditions can and will change daily. Fire related trail and area restrictions are solely for the purpose of public safety and can and will continue to change quickly as fire conditions change. The Forest is strongly encouraging back country hunters to consider heading to other locations for the start of the general hunting season. For those interested in hunting in the North Fork Sun River area, Headquarters Pass and Route Creek Pass remain better and more viable access options.

Anyone planning on traveling through, camping or hunting on the Rocky Mountain Ranger District within the areas affected by fire in the South Fork or North Fork of the Sun River drainages should contact the Rocky Mountain Ranger District office in Choteau at (406) 466-5341 or the Augusta Information Station at (406) 562-3247.

Visitors should observe caution and be alert for the following hazards in recently burned areas:●Falling trees and snags, particularly in windy or wet conditions.●Rolling rocks or logs from above when traveling below an area that has burned.●Occasional smoke or open flame.

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