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An effort to control a massive fire in the Bridger Range was estimated to have cost $1.6 million as of Thursday morning.

The Bridger Foothills fire started last Friday and has burned more than 8,200 acres, according to fire officials. The acreage increased Thursday because officials got more accurate mapping of the fire’s perimeter. The perimeter was considered 68% contained as of Thursday night.

The National Interagency Fire Center’s daily situation report put the cost of the fire at $1.6 million. Fire spokesperson Mariah Leuschen-Lonergan confirmed the number.

More than 300 people have been assigned to the fire, along with several aircraft.

The south side of the fire, a large portion of the east side and a large spot east of the fire are contained, according to fire officials.

On Thursday, fire crews planned to continue securing the southwest side. Crews will make there way north form there.

Another crew was making a fuel break in heavily timbered areas directly north of the fire.

Dustin Workman, construction manager for NorthWestern Energy’s Bozeman division, said he’s estimating that the fire caused up to $100,000 in damaged power lines and other equipment.

He said the fire destroyed 28 power poles that caused an outage starting at Kelly Canyon that went north beyond Bridger Bowl, and along Jackson Creek Road from Bridger Canyon Road to Interstate 90. Workman said the fire burned through transformer boxes, too.

Workman said about 99% of residents had their power back on. The remaining residents would likely have power restored by the end of Thursday, he said.

“We were just trying to concentrate and pick up a majority of customers throughout the event,” Workman said.

Gallatin County Sheriff Brian Gootkin said the fire claimed 28 homes. He said he didn’t have a number on how many animals had died from the fire or the number of outbuildings that were destroyed from the blaze.

Bridger Canyon Drive from Boylan Road to Brackett Creek Road is still closed to the public.

Residents should expect to continue to see smoke and flames. The sheriff’s release said fire crews are aware of those conditions and ask people not to call 911.

Residents should avoid spending time in burned areas, even on their property.

“Many hazards exist including burnt trees that are highly unstable and dangerous,” the sheriff’s release said.

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Freddy Monares can be reached at or at 406-582-2630.