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Montana wildfire roundup: Rain, what took you so long?

Montana fires, rain

A sign near Plains expresses thanks to firefighters
THOMAS PLANK, Missoulian


Read the Billings Gazette story here.

Here’s the latest Montana fire news, as of Thursday morning.

How you can help: Here is information on how to help. And even more info on how to help.

Stay up to date: Follow Montana Wildfires on Facebook or Twitter for fire updates.

 Evacuations lifted: Residents evacuated due to the Alice Creek fire burning northeast of Lincoln will be allowed to return today, Lewis and Clark County Sheriff Leo Dutton announced.

Driest summer since ’29: The massive sigh of relief from firefighters, evacuees, sheriff departments, and just about everyone else comes with a question. Rain, what took you so long?

Snow in the forecast: Up to a foot of snow could fall at Beartooth Pass beginning this evening, as a large system of colder, wetter weather is expected to bring rain and high-elevation snow through Saturday afternoon.

Hunkering down: Wild critters can’t heed health agency warnings to take refuge indoors from the pall of wildfire smoke smothering the West. They’re stuck outside, coping with bad air quality much as they deal with weather extremes throughout the year.No rest for firefighters: Approaching rain or not, firefighters and managers are keeping shoulders to the grindstone. The most recent mandatory evacuation came in Sanders County at the Sheep Gap fire, between Plains and Thompson Falls, in the Highway 200 Complex.

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