A lightning strike approximately 13 miles east of Ely started the Pagami Creek Wildfire inside the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness (BWCAW). The fire smoldered in a bog for several days. Like hundreds of other lightning fires, it produced barely enough smoke to indicate its existence. Then a a series of extraordinary and unusual conditions came together that caused the Pagami Creek Fire to demonstrate unprecedented behavior and grow to historic proportions. (downloadable fact sheet)
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One Year Later: The Pagami Creek Wildfire Area on September 11, 2012
Two Years Later: The Pagami Creek Wildfire Area on September 10, 2013
Closures and trail clearing related to the Pagami Creek Wildfire (updated 7/12/13)
A total of 116 campsites in the BWCAW were affected by the Pagami Creek Wildfire. Forest Service crews have worked with partners to rehabilitate campsites, trails and portages. While a few campsites remained closed for visitor use, most of the area affected by the fire has been re-opened to the public.