The Alder Creek Fire burning west of Wise River has grown to 10,322 acres as of Sunday morning and is expected to merge with the nearby Christensen Fire.
Both fires continue to grow, with the Christensen Fire now standing at 6,305 acres west of the Alder Creek Fire.
A Sunday update from the Southwest Area Incident Management Team said structure protection remains a priority; crews will conduct burnout operations in Bear Gulch and along Highway 73 if conditions are favorable.
As of Saturday, Stage 2 evacuations for Alder Creek residents have been scaled back to Stage 1, according to the Beaverhead County Sheriff's Office.
Under Stage 1, there is a high probability of the need for evacuation. Law enforcement will attempt to make personal visits to each residence and business in the threatened area. Some residents, primarily those with special health needs or other concerns, should relocate during this stage of evacuation.
The Stage 1 alert and warning is effective for the Alder Creek community; the south side of Highway 43 from Alder Creek Road to Dickie Bridge; and the west side of the Pioneer Scenic Byway from airport to Harriet Lou Road.
All of Beaverhead County remains under Stage 2 fire restrictions.
The Alder Creek Fire was started by lightning on July 8 and is currently ten percent contained. The cause of the Christensen Fire has not been determined; it was first reported on July 16 and currently has no containment.