MISSOULA, Mont. — Hundreds of residences in western Montana are being ordered to evacuate because of a wildfire.

The Missoula County Sheriff’s Office ordered the evacuations Monday in the Seeley Lake area.

The Red Cross has reopened a shelter in Missoula.

Authorities also closed Seeley Lake to recreation because it was being used by helicopters for water drops on the fire.

The fire in the Lolo National Forest has been burning since July 24 when it was started by lightning. It has burned nearly 28,000 acres (11,331 hectares). About 535 firefighters are on the fire.

Author photo
The AP is one of the largest and most trusted sources of independent newsgathering. AP is neither privately owned nor government-funded; instead, as a not-for-profit news cooperative owned by its American newspaper and broadcast members, it can maintain its single-minded focus on newsgathering and its commitment to the highest standards of objective, accurate journalism.