USDA Forest Service

Fires reported in BWCA and near the Gunflint Trail following weekend storms

A small fire was reported today (July 26) in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness near Ogishkemuncie Lake.

The remote Boundary Waters lake is just southwest of Seagull Lake in the Jasper and Alpine area near the end of the Gunflint Trail.

Patty Johnson is the east zone fire management officer for the Gunflint and Tofte districts. She said the fire near Ogishkemuncie Lake is about one acre in size and just before noon today a helicopter was scheduled to start dropping water on the fire. A fire crew was also going in to suppress the fire on the ground. The fire is believed to have started from a lightning strike over the weekend, she said.

Johnson also shared information about a fire at the end of the Gunflint Trail from recent days when a power line near Gull Lake and Saganaga Lake started a small fire. Johnson said the Gunflint Trail Volunteer Fire Department responded quickly and the fire was extinguished.

A similar event happened near Isabella on Friday night as well when a tree fell on a power line, Johnson said. That blaze was also quickly extinguished.

Johnson also noted several campfires that were left smoldering in recent days. At this time all campfires are banned on Superior National Forest land.

Johnson said there are numerous fires burning at this time in the BWCA near Ely, including fires that started after the intense storm system Friday night. Regarding the active fires in Quetico, Johnson said resources to fight the Canadian wildfires remained strained and the fires are active, though cooler temperatures and calmer winds are helping.