What could have been a major forest fire became something most people haven’t even heard about. The USFS monitors lightening strikes to see if anything becomes of them and on July 2nd a routine flight by a Beaver didn’t detect anything unusual over
. Thankfully an hour later a wilderness ranger did see something and that something was smoke. Southwest of
Three Mile Island
near Shirttail Point on the mainland there was a plume of smoke. The ranger called to report it and immediately two CL215’s were dispatched to start dumping water. Even though it was 5:00 p.m. the USFS thought it was necessary to act quickly because the fire was in a remote area about 150 yards away from the lake and right in the blowdown. A westward wind could push the fire directly into the residences on
and into the Gunflint Trail itself. A 9-person crew was sent in on the 3rd of July and remained there until the 8th. During this time they cut lines around the fire, laid hose and prevented the Rog Lake Fire from spreading. Ironically the fire started in an area that is slated for a prescribed burn this Fall. The
burn is a 7170 acre burn that will help eliminate the amount of down, dead wood from the 1999 Blowdown. Once this burn is completed the residents at the end of the Trail should be able to breathe a little easier in knowing the threat of a devastating forest fire has been lessened.