Ouachita National Forest fire possibly caused by lightning

Crews are working to extinguish a wildfire burning in the Ouachita National Forest. The steep rugged terrain is about two miles northeast of Shady Lake Recreation Area in Montgomery County.

The fire may have been caused by a lightning strike. On Friday morning, the fire was burning about 120 acres. Crews are allowing it to burn while they monitor to determine when full-suppression measures are necessary.

Gloria Chrismer is District Manager for the Ouachita National Forest fire managers. "This strategy is effective when rugged terrain with limited access makes placing firefighters on firelines riskier," she said. "We also consider the existing conditions, asking are there potential resource benefits and are there natural barriers in place? In this case, the answer is yes."

Fire managers say that the fire is not burning near private property. It is bounded on four sides by the Athens-Big Fork trail on the east, County Road 106 on the north, County Road 38 on the west, and Forest Service road 908 on the south. At this time, there are no closures in the area.