Jun 26, 2012 10:54 PM by Paul Kavanaugh
Multiple homes have burned in the Mountain Shadows neighborhood during the past few hours.
Officials said at an 8:30 p.m. news conference that the fire roared up Queens Canyon and winds reached up to 65 mph at the top of the ridge and pushed the fire down the other side into the Flying W. Ranch and Mountain Shadows neighborhoods.
"This has been a very bad day," said Springs mayor Steve Bach.
A huge area of the northwest part of the Springs is under evacuation includling north of Garden of the Gods from the western border of the Springs to I-25 and northward to the southern sections of the Air Force Academy.
CSFD officials said weather and wind caused the fire to breach stopping points. The wind shifted 3 times sending fire toward the firefighters.
Numerous reports of structures on fire or destroyed have come in from the Flying W. Ranch and Mountain Shadows neighborhoods.
CSFD is triaging homes that can be saved and will be working through the night continuing to try and protect homes. Officials will put crews in places that will do the most good.
"This was a firestorm of epic proportions,' said Fire Chief Rich Brown.
New shelters have been added including: Lewis Palmer HIgh School, 1300 Higby Road in Monument, Phil Long Expo Center 1515 Auto Mall Loop and the southeastern YMCA at 2190 Jet Wing Drive.
32,000 people have been evacuated.
CSPD chief Carey said over 100 officers are involved in traffic control including officers from as far away as Aurora and Pueblo.