COLORADO — Crews across the state are battling multiple wildfires as dry conditions persist. On Sunday, at least three new wildfires were reported.
Eagle County & Pitkin County
The wildfire burning near Sylvan Lake State Park in Eagle County forced officials to issue pre-evacuation notices Sunday. Campers and others recreating in Sylvan Lake State Park and much of the surrounding lands have been evacuated.
On Sunday evening, the fire was estimated to be at 180 acres and growing in lodgepole pine and other timber on the White River National Forest. It is being pushed by high winds and firefighters are reporting extreme fire behavior, officials said.
On Monday morning, the Pitkin County Sheriff's Office said all residents, businesses and other people in the Ruedi, Meredith and Thomasville areas may be asked to evacuate if the Sylvan Wildfire worsens. As of 6:30 a.m., the upper Frying Pan from the dam to Hagerman Pass is under pre-evacuation notice. An evacuation center is set up at the Basalt High School, located at 600 Southside Drive.
The cause is under investigation.
The Snowmass Canyon Fire was fully contained Saturday. The one-acre blaze did not damage any structures.
This fire burning in Moffat County was reported on Middle Mountain in the northwest corner of the county. The fire is on Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and State Trust Lands, burning in heavy lodgepole pine timbers, officials said. The size of the blaze is unknown.
The West Fire is spewing smoke that's visible across most of Moffat County and Craig.
A third fire reported Sunday, the Muddy Slide Fire, is burning in the area of Forest Service Roads 280 and 285 on Green Ridge in Routt County. Several local, state, and federal resources are on scene, officials said.
Green Ridge and South Stagecoach are under pre-evacuation notice for this fire which is an estimated 100 plus acres in size.
A lightning-sparked fire in Mount Falcon Park in Jefferson County flared up Sunday, growing a quarter acre since Saturday. A helicopter is attacking the blaze while the park remains closed. The park was able to reopen for a few hours Sunday before it was closed again after the fire flared up.
Rio Blanco County
Lightning is also being blamed for starting a wildfire in Rio Blanco County Friday. This blaze, called the Oil Springs Fire, is burning 20 miles south of Rangely and was at 0% containment Monday morning. It has grown to 5,000 acres.
The Oil Springs Fire is burning in a remote area, preventing trucks from getting to the blaze, officials said. However, no structures are threatened. The BLM is expecting the fire to burn numerous acres. Highway 139 was closed Sunday as the fire encroached. It jumped the highway overnight.
🚫CO 139 is CLOSED due to the Oil Springs wildfire. The closure is in place from Mile Point 6 – 64 (roughly Loma to Rangely) There is no estimated time of reopening. All updates will continue to be posted to https://t.co/uOU0HHbUQ6 #colorado pic.twitter.com/46kdKW6WkM— Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) (@ColoradoDOT) June 21, 2021
In addition to Highway 139, several other roads are closed, including the County Road 23 and County Road 113 intersection, and County Road 122 at mile marker 10.
Evacuations were ordered for County Road 116, County Road 27, County Road 28, County Road 120, County Road 26A, County Road 103, and County Road 128.
I-70 corridor fires
Also on Saturday, BLM reported several fires along Interstate 70 amid multiple lightning strikes. The largest fire is the Smith Gulch Fire, an estimated 5-acre blaze burning northeast of De Beque and is visible from I-70. Officials reported multiple engines, crews, and aircraft are making good progress on the fires.
For more information on the current fire incidents across Colorado and the United States, Inciweb is a good source of updates from local, state and federal crews.