Sunday morning fires update: Forecast winds Monday could increase Grizzly Creek activity; crew mopping up small fire on Mt. Sopris
Solid rain on Saturday increased the danger for fire crews working in drainages and on slopes on the Grizzly Creek Fire, but containment still increased to 73%.
“The steep terrain, combined with a solid wetting rain, created treacherous working conditions on slopes and drainage,” a Sunday morning update from the Alaska Incident Management Team reports. “Crews were pulled off the line to wait for the rain to pass. Firefighters exercised extreme caution on the slippery roads.”
The Grizzly Creek Fire started Aug. 10 in Glenwood Canyon along Interstate 70 and is currently 32,464 acres. As containment of the fire increases, firefighters are working in more rugged and dangerous terrain.
“Helicopters were required to deliver two additional crews to an uncontained section of the fire perimeter, where they are working on a fireline to connect the Grizzly Creek rim to the No Name rim,” Sunday’s update states. “These two drainages comprise some of the most dangerous terrain on this fire and continue to present a challenge.”
Another crew is being added Sunday to help in this area.
Although temperatures are expected to remain lower heading into the week, fire activity could increase Monday.
“Cold fronts are forecast through Sunday and Monday, bringing isolated showers and strong winds,” the release states. “Despite the chance for local precipitation, fuels are expected to dry by Monday, which could be a critical fire day with low relative humidities and winds gusting to 37 mph.”
An update Sunday also stated that air quality reports would no longer be issued for the Grizzly Creek Fire.
Road closures are still in for Coffee Pot Road, Transfer Trail Road and areas of the Flat Top Wilderness accessed by those roads, as do many other roads in and around the White River National Forest. Go to http://www.cotrip.org for the most up-to-date road conditions.
Small lightning fire on Mount Sopris being mopped up
A lightning strike Saturday started a small fire high up on Mount Sopris, but helicopters were able to douse it Sunday morning and keep it from spreading, said David Boyd, spokesman for the U.S. Forest Service.
The fire was limited to one or two trees, Boyd added, and a crew is hiking in Sunday for mop-up.
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Federal lands in and around the Roaring Fork Valley will be under a Stage 1 fire restrictions starting Friday, officials with the White River National Forest and Bureau of Land Management announced Wednesday morning.