Wildland Fire Information for Travelers

Montana is 93 million acres of spectacular unspoiled nature. Because of our diverse landscape and weather, wildfires happen as a natural part of Montana’s ecology. Sometimes a fire occurs near a popular destination, but there’s no reason to let it stop you from enjoying your Montana experience. 

Montana's wildland fire season generally starts mid-summer. At that time, the information below will be updated about current fires with potential impacts on travel. If a fire is occurring near your destination, remember it’s being managed by experts whose top priority is public safety. If an area is open, it’s safe. 

If you have questions or would like assistance with your Montana itinerary, feel free to call a travel counselor at 800.847.4868 or go to VISITMT.com to start a live chat.


Latest Activity

Updated July 24, 2021 7:02 AM

Yellowstone National Park

Roads and attractions are open, please note that Yellowstone National Park has upgraded to "very high" fire danger and is currently under Stage 1 Fire Restrictions.  Click here for Current Conditions

Glacier National Park

Roads and attractions are open.   Stage 1 Fire Restrictions are in effect to reduce the risk of fire and protect National Park Service lands, resources, facilities, and protect public and employee health and safety.  Click here for Current Conditions

Big Hole National Battlefield

  • To support the firefighting efforts on the Trail Creek Fire, Big Hole National Battlefield is closed from 07/17/2021 at 5:00pm until further notice.

Continental Divide Trail (CDT)

The Continental Divide Trail Coalition has the most up-to-date information, including closures and recommended re-routes.

Travel Conditions


Current Fire Restrictions

Across Montana, fire activity remains high and restrictions are in place. For a map of current fire restriction information by area for the state of Montana, visit MTFIREINFO.ORG

Stage One Fire Restrictions
Stage 1 Fire Restrictions require users to build, maintain, attend or use campfires and charcoal fires only at developed or designated recreation sites or campgrounds in an agency provided metal fire ring. Smoking is allowed only within an enclosed vehicle or building, a developed recreation site, or while stopped in an area at least three feet in diameter that is cleared of all flammable materials. Remember to  bring a bucket, water, shovel and to always leave your campfire dead out, which means no heat to the touch. 

Stage Two Fire Restrictions
Stage 2 Fire Restrictions prohibit building maintaining, attending, or using a fire or campfire; smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle or building, a developed recreation site, or while stopped in an area at least three feet in diameter that is barren or cleared of all flammable materials; operating motorized vehicles off designated roads and trails.

A complete guide to Stage One and State Two Restrictions is available here

National Forest Alerts and Notices

National Forests and the ranger districts within each Forest have alerts and restrictions based on the conditions in the district.  Please check the current conditions in the Forest and district you plan to visit, including fire restrictions, camping regulations, and any trail or road closures.

Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest

Bitterroot National Forest

Custer Gallatin National Forest

Flathead National Forest

Helena-Lewis and Clark National Forest

Kootenai National Forest

Lolo National Forest


Smoke and Air Quality Conditions

Multiple factors contribute to air quality and conditions can change often. If smoke is heavy or you’re sensitive to it, you may wish to consider adjusting your itinerary until air quality improves. Try exploring a different area (see things to do at VisitMT.com). Even if you see smoke, it doesn't necessarily mean you’re close to a fire. Sometimes smoke blows in from hundreds of miles away. 

For up-to-date air quality conditions from the Montana Department of Environmental Quality, click here.

The Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services maintains a website with health information related to wildfire smoke. To access it, click here.


Webcams

See the view before you go from a variety of webcams across the state.
NOTE: The following links go to websites maintained by third parties.

State Agencies

National Park Service


Additional Resources


Do Your Part This Wildland Fire Season

As the weather becomes warmer and wildland vegetation, or fuels, begin to dry out, it is time to plan for wildland fires. Here are some tips to help you #RecreateResponsibly and do your part for wildfire prevention and safety during this fire season.

  • KNOW BEFORE YOU GO—Know how to prevent wildfires by properly using outdoor equipment, learning campfire safety, and checking for fire restrictions and closures.

  • PLAN AHEAD—Know what fire restrictions are in place at your destination, and check if campfires, barbecues, and flammables are allowed.

  • EXPLORE LOCALLY—Impacts from wildfire can change your travel plans. Have a back-up plan, like close-to-home gems that you have yet to explore.

  • PRACTICE PHYSICAL DISTANCING—Give people space – it’s critical to not crowd firefighting efforts. Wildfires are no-drone-zones.

  • PLAY IT SAFE—From fireworks to camp stoves, understand the potentially explosive nature of your toys and tools – some may be restricted in your location.

  • LEAVE NO TRACE—Keep your campfire small, ensure that its out completely and cold to the touch prior to leaving or going to sleep.

  • BUILD AN INCLUSIVE OUTDOORS—Everyone experiences the outdoors differently, and we can work together to keep our communities safe.

Wildland Fires are No Drone Zones

Flying a drone near a wildland fire is breaking the law.  Drones and firefighting aircraft don't mix. No Drone Zone PSA