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The National Weather Service has issued a red flag warning for thunderstorms - and "significantly increased fire danger" - in the Bitterroot Mountains from noon to midnight Tuesday.

Forecasters say scattered thunderstorms will develop and move through the area this afternoon and evening. "These storms will have wet cores," the warning says, "but do not expect widespread rain."

Instead, the lightning and winds associated with the storms could start or spread wildfires, the Weather Service warns.

It continues: "Thunderstorms may begin as isolated by noontime, but will quicklly increase to scattered coverage by early afternoon. Scattered thunderstorms will continue through the evening hours."

In addition, temperatures will be well above normal, according to the forecast, "causing humidities to fall into the teens and lower 20s."

The Weather Service's message concludes: "A red flag warning is intended to alert land managers to expected weather conditions, that along with sufficiently dry fuels will significantly increase fire danger."

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