Skip to main content

Boreal Emergency Preparedness Portal

Superior National Forest - Greenwood Lake wildfire update - September 20, 2021

Sep 20, 2021 09:09AM ● By Editor
Photo: Superior National Forest

From Superior National Forest - September 20, 2021


SIZE:  26,797 acres       CONTAINMENT:  80%          PERSONNEL:  146


SUMMARY: Started by lightning, the Greenwood Fire was detected on August 15, 2021, about 3:00 p.m. on the Laurentian Ranger District.  The fire started approximately ten miles southwest of Isabella. 14 primary structures and 57 outbuildings were destroyed on August 23. The objective of fire management for the Greenwood Fire is full suppression using all available resources. 

YESTERDAY: Crews minimized work along public roads yesterday due to an increase in traffic from hunters and fall leaf peepers. Crews continued to identify and remove hazard trees when located. Hazard trees remain a significant danger to firefighters. Hazard trees include those that have structural defects from age, fire, or disease, and could impact “targets” such as people, homes, and cars. Firefighters continued to rehabilitate control lines around the fire perimeter.

TODAY: Firefighters will continue to remove threatening snags and other hazard trees along containment lines and Highway 2. Crews will be removing hose and sprinkler kits from access trails. Rehabilitation is on-going, done by pulling cleared vegetation back onto the dozer line to create a vegetation layer that protects the soil and returns the area to its normal state as much as possible. A Type 3 helicopter and heat-detecting infra-red flights will be used to monitor the fire area. 

 WEATHER/FIRE BEHAVIOR: Gusty conditions continue today as a low pressure system moves through the area. Southerly flow will switch to northwesterly as a cold front moves through in the late afternoon. A line of showers and thunderstorms is expected to reach the fire in the late morning and early afternoon ahead of this front, with strong winds as the main concern. Occasional wind gusts 50-60 mph could be possible with this line. Today will be mostly cloudy with nearly a 100 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms in the afternoon. High temperatures will reach 73 and the humidity will be a minimum of 78 percent. South winds 9 to 13 mph shifting to the southwest 8 to 9 mph late in the afternoon with gusts to 27 mph.

SAFETY & EVACUATIONS: On Saturday, September 18 beginning at 1 PM, the Lake County Sheriff’s Office began issuing security pass cards to ALL property owners on McDougal Lake Road, N. McDougal Lake Road, Middle Road, and Stony Loop Road in the Isabella restricted fire area. Security pass cards can be picked up at the checkpoint at Hwy 1 and McDougal Lake Road. For information about getting a checkpoint pass to access your property within the fire closure area, call Lake County Dispatch, 218-510-0640.  

FIRE RESTRICTIONS: Effective September 17, Superior National Forest lifted fire restrictions across National Forest System lands, including the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness management area. Although campfires, charcoal grills and stoves are allowed, please practice caution by keeping fires small, not tall and ensuring your fire is out cold to the touch before leaving it unattended. Some fire restrictions remain place for state and private lands in Cook and Lake counties. Check Wildland fire information | Minnesota DNR ( for details.


  • National Forest System lands, roads and recreation areas are closed in the area of the Greenwood Fire to protect public health and safety. The closure area extends across the Kawishiwi, Laurentian, and Tofte Ranger Districts and includes several Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness Entry Points. To see the full Forest order and other Forest closures, visit

Greenwood Fire information on InciWeb

Public Information Line: 218-499-9441     Email: [email protected]     

For all other fires on the Superior National Forest: 218-214-7844    

Facebook: Superior National Forest

Upcoming Events Near You

No Events in the next 21 days.