MTPR

Nicky Ouellet

Flathead Valley Reporter

Nicky is MTPR's Flathead-area reporter. Nicky returns to the Flathead Valley after wrapping up her graduate studies at the University of Montana's environmental science journalism program.

603-568-6155 or 406-730-2264

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Montana Artesian Water Company obtains DEQ permit for a facility that would produce 1.2 billion bottles of water each year.
Nicky Ouellet

Plans for a water bottling plant outside Kalispell moved one step closer to fruition Tuesday. The Montana Department of Environmental Quality issued a wastewater discharge permit for the Montana Artesian Water Company. It’s one of two permits the plant needs to open.

Montana Firefighters Narrowly Escape Flames, Bear
(PD)

A crew of firefighters working on the Liberty Fire east of Arlee found themselves trapped Saturday night, after a sudden shift in the wind ignited hundreds of small spot fires in the path of their planned escape route.

Glacier National Park's Sperry Chalet as seen on July 21, 2017.
Courtesy Bret Bouda

Thursday night, strong winds fanned the Sprague Fire burning in Glacier National Park and nearly doubled its size. The flames engulfed and destroyed the main rock and timber dormitory of the Sperry Chalet, which for more than a hundred years offered a haven of amenities to hikers in Glacier’s rugged backcountry.

Today, the internet is flooded with personal stories that together weave a history of the lost National Historic Landmark.

Glacier Park's Sperry Chalet as seen in June, 2017.
Eric Whitney

One of Glacier National Park’s historic backcountry lodges was lost to the Sprague Fire Thursday evening.

The main building at the Sperry Chalet burned despite firefighters’ best efforts. The team had staged there for the past week to lay an extensive hose, sprinkler and pump system around all of the structures associated with the Chalet.

The Rice Ridge Fire public meeting in Ovando Tuesday
Nicky Ouellet

At last night’s public meeting on the Rice Ridge Fire in Ovando, John Thompson, the incident commander leading the charge against it, said Wednesday will be a big day.

"I'm gonna tell you straight up that tomorrow [Wed, 8/30] is probably going to be one of the most challenging days we have of this fire season," Thompson said.

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