BLM lifts Hunt Fire closure, achieves 40% containment over weekend |

BLM lifts Hunt Fire closure, achieves 40% containment over weekend

Burnout operations on the Hunt Fire southwest of Meeker last week.

MEEKER — The Bureau of Land Management has reopened the Hunt Fire closure area, after gaining 40% containment of the fire burning southwest of Meeker over the weekend.

According to a Sunday evening press release, fire crews completed burnout operations within the northwest corner of the containment area, west of Big Jimmy Road and south of a gas pipeline that is located in the area.

The Hunt Fire has grown to an estimated 3,766 acres as a result of fire management operations, and containment is holding at 40%.

“Fire behavior within the burn perimeter has subsided sufficiently to allow public access, but visitors should be aware that there will still be firefighters working in the area,” according to the release from the BLM White River Field Office. “Hot spots continue to smolder, and flare-ups within the burn can be expected for the next several days, especially during hot, dry, or windy conditions.”

The Hunt Fire was transferred from a Type 3 organization to Type 4 local resources from the White River Field Office on Sunday.

Incident Commander Joel Hendrickson is overseeing four engine crews as they monitor fire activity and ensure the fire stays within its established perimeter.

Monday and Tuesday weather is expected to be slightly cooler and cloudier, with potential for scattered showers and thunderstorms, which should help ongoing fire suppression efforts.

According to the release, fire management efforts are expected to “rejuvenate the ecosystem and provide diversity on the landscape that benefits wildlife, livestock, and people alike for decades to come.”

Lightning ignited the Hunt Fire on BLM land in remote southern Rio Blanco County on Sept. 5. It has been burning in thick brush on ridges and valleys north of the Roan Plateau.

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