Horseshoe Fire Morning Update 9/12/18

FIRE SITUATION:  Today firefighters will continue to build and improve fire line; work on hot spots; and patrol around structures. Resources will continue arriving today to assist with containment. The team is working today in conjunction with Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office to determine the number of structures affected and more details will be released soon.

Night operations staffed the fire last night and monitored burning pockets of vegetation within the fires perimeter, no increase in size occurred. Night operations will also be in place this evening.

The Department of Natural Resources and Conservation’s (DNRC) County Assist Team, Incident Commander Don Pyrah, is in place and managing the fire while working closely with Gallatin County.

The fire began on the afternoon of Monday, September 10th. Initial attack efforts, including ground and air resources, were critical to public safety and minimizing property loss.

PUBLIC MEETING:  7:00 PM tonight, Wednesday, September 12, at Clarkston Fire Hall

SIZE:   2,000 acres
CAUSE:   Under Investigation
FIRE LOCATION:   20 miles N of Logan, Gallatin County
PROTECTION:   Gallatin County
OWNERSHIP:   Private

1 Hand Crew (20 people)
14 Engines
4 Helicopters
4 Smoke jumpers
4 Heavy Equipment (3 dozers, 1 water tender)

EVACUATIONS:  Currently there are no evacuations or closures in place.


Horseshoe Fire Evening Update 9/11/18

Firefighters worked hard today to stop the forward progress of the fire.  Firefighters faced difficult conditions including extremely dry fuels and long turnaround times for the three helicopters hauling water.  The juniper in the area burns hot and fast, making for a long day for firefighters on the ground.

No additional structures were lost today and there have been no reports of public or firefighting injuries.

The Department of Natural Resources and Conservation’s (DNRC) County Assist Team arrived today to assist local, county, state, and federal efforts. Incident Commander, Don Pyrah, with the County Assist Team assumed management of the fire at 8:00 PM this evening and will work in cooperation with Gallatin County Office of Emergency Management, Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office, and local firefighting resources.

No evacuation orders are in place. Residents are encouraged to stay in touch by registering their phones on and reviewing the information on preparing for wildfires in your community.

An update will be published tomorrow mid-morning with additional fire information and details.


County Assist Team
Public Information Officer
Crystal Beckman

Horseshoe Fire Update

GCEM Media Release

(Gallatin County, Mt.)  Horseshoe Fire Update: This morning, the fire was estimated at 2000 acres and is 0% contained. It is burning in steep, rugged terrain that is difficult for fire engines to access. Several structures have been burned but firefighters were able to save others. No details on the number of structures lost are available at this time. There have been no injuries or fatalities among firefighters or the public. There are no evacuation orders in place.

Federal, state, and local resources are being used to fight the fire, including Bozeman Fire, Central Valley, Hyalite Fire, Fort Ellis, Bridger Canyon, and Willow Creek. The current strategy is to protect structures and to attack the fire with ground and air resources, including helicopters and bulldozers. Fire management will transition to a DNRC County Assist Team this afternoon. More information will be provided as it becomes available.

Photos courtesy of the Sheriff’s Office.  Downloadable map included in PDF.





Fire in Clarkston

(Gallatin County, Mont.) Monday afternoon at 3:30 a wild-land fire was reported in the Clarkston South of Pole Gulch Road.  First responding units found a fire burning in timber, grass and brush threatening homes.  Sheriff’s Deputies responded and contacted residents that were in the fire’s path.  Most every fire department in the valley sent resources including aircraft and smoke jumpers from the Department of Natural Resources and Conservation & the U.S. Forest Service.  Deputies remain in the area and access is restricted to local residents.  The fire is reported to be about 1500 acres and burning actively.  There are reports that structures have been burned including homes but a full assessment of the damage will not be completed until later.  The cause is under investigation by the Sheriff’s Office.  There are no evacuation orders in effect.  Residents are encouraged to stay in touch by registering their phones on  information on preparing for wildfire in your community is also available on that web site.


Man Killed by Logs near Three Forks

(Gallatin County, Mont.)  On September 6, 2018, at 6:39 P.M., The Gallatin County 911 Center received a call of a male who had an accident while unloading logs from a tractor-trailer at a lumberyard outside of Three Forks.  Deputies and Three Forks Ambulance arrived and found that 69-year-old Allan Wagner of Belgrade was deceased, having succumbed to blunt force injuries sustained during the accident.  Gallatin County deputies and a Deputy Coroner investigated the incident.

Bow Hunter injured near Big Sky

(Big Sky, Mont.)  Thursday afternoon at 4:00 the Gallatin County 911 Center received a call reporting an injured bow-hunter on Buck Ridge South of Big Sky, MT.  The 61 year old man from Indiana had fallen down a steep hill while bow hunting.  During the fall one of his arrows came loose from his quiver, impaling him in the upper right thigh.  The arrow was removed and one of his hunting partners applied a compression bandage.  Sheriff’s Deputies and volunteers from Sheriff’s Search and Rescue at Big Sky responded to the area on the Buck Ridge Trail thirteen miles west of Highway 191 where SAR members located the hunter’s 4×4.  The rescue team found the patient on a steep south facing slope, and used low angle roping techniques, were able to lift the rescue litter with the man back to the trail.  He was transferred to a Life Flight Network medical helicopter, which had landed near the trail.  Life Flight then transported him to Bozeman Deaconess Hospital for further medical treatment.

Gallatin County Sheriff Brian Gootkin applauds the individuals in the hunting party for being prepared for this unfortunate situation.  The party had a satellite phone for emergency contact needs and enough medical supplies, and knowledge, to render immediate medical aide.  Being prepared when entering the backcountry is essential, as a normally fun outing can quickly turn into a serious situation.  Photo courtesy of GCSO

Suspects in Thefts from Vehicles

(Gallatin County, Mont.)

The Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office is seeking the public’s assistance in identifying the following individuals. The two photographed below are suspects in a number of theft cases ranging from Bozeman to Billings.  It is believed one or both of the suspects live in Billings but may have ties to the Bozeman area.  As seen in the color photos, the first suspect, in the driver’s seat has tattoos on the bottom of both wrists and is wearing a work uniform with a name badge.  The second suspect captured later on surveillance cameras operating the vehicle in the black and white photos appears to have a large tattoo on the underside of her left forearm at another location.  If you know the identity of either of suspect, please contact the Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office at 406-582-2100.  A reward may be available through Crimestoppers for information leading to successful prosecution.

Belgrade Boy Killed in ATV Crash

(Gallatin County, Mont.) Sunday at 3:41 P.M.,  Sheriff’s Deputies were called to an ATV crash in Clarkston off Spring Valley Rd in the Ponderosa Pines Sub Division.  12-year-old Ty Kendall from Belgrade was the sole occupant and driver.  He was pronounced dead on the scene.  A Sheriff’s Deputy Coroner with determine cause and manner of death assisted by the Montana Highway Patrol who is investigating the crash.

New York Woman Injured on Horse Ride

(Big Sky Mont.) On Saturday, September 1st  at 4:30 p.m.  a  Sheriff’s Deputy and members from Sheriff’s Search and Rescue at Big Sky responded to a report of an injured horseback rider in the North Fork Trail Head area.  A Lone Mountain Ranch guide reported a 28 yr old female from New York had fallen off her horse and was unable to get up.  Volunteer Rescuers located the injured woman and she was transported to Ridge Fork Road using a specialized Search and Rescue ATV.  She was met by paramedics with Big Sky Fire Department and transported to Big Sky Medical Center.  Photo courtesy of the Sheriff’s Office



Thefts from Trail Heads

(Bozeman, Mont.) Deputies investigated more than ten thefts from vehicles at trails heads Saturday.  Sites included Sypes Canyon, Middle Cottonwood, Sourdough and Tuckerman on Goldenstein.  Vehicles parked at the trail heads have had windows smashed and items taken.

Sheriff Gootkin said Deputies are following leads tonight but as always when parked at trail heads leave valuables at home or out of sight.  Anyone that observed something of interest today is encouraged to contact the Sheriff’s Office at 582-2100.