BREAKING: Breckenridge wildfire forces evacuations near Peak 7
UPDATE (3:53 p.m.): A shift in the wind is pushing the wildfire north and slowing its climb up the mountain, a welcome development for firefighters.
An evacuation standby has been put in place for the roughly 40 homes in the Gold Hill neighborhood.
Visible flames have tapered off but heavy smoke is still billowing from the site and moving toward Frisco.
The fire is still estimated at 60-70 acres and the air attack is ongoing. Crews on foot, however, are moving to safer positions away from the fire’s potential spread.
UPDATE (3:20): A wildfire near Breckenridge is now burning roughly 70 acres and appears to be growing fast, with large flames periodically visible from across the valley.
A mandatory evacuation has been ordered for the Peak 7 neighborhood.
Per RWB, Peak 7 is under evacuation notice at this time. Shekel and all of Breckenridge should be prepared to evacuate due to wildland fire.
— Breckenridge Police (@BreckPolice) July 5, 2017
Eight smokejumpers and a local firefighting crew are scene. An air attack is underway as well, with a tanker dropping flame retardant and a helicopter conducting bucket drops.
The wildfire broke out in the Gold Hill Trail area near Breckenridge, the latest in a string of blazes that have broken out across the state amid extremely hot and dry weather.
A firefighting crew from the Red, White and Blue Fire Protection District is currently approaching on foot to assess the scene, and smokejumpers with the U.S. Forest service are en route.
Like the Gutzler Fire, which is currently burning roughly 300 acres southwest of Kremmling, the terrain near this fire is heavily beetle-killed, posing a potential safety risk to firefighters that limits their ability to conduct direct suppression.
Winds also appear to be pushing the small fire uphill and into more beetle-kill.
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