BLM: Mixed bag of Stage 1 and 2 fire restrictions in northwest Colorado

SILT, Colo. – As a result of recent cooler weather and increased moisture, the BLM’s Colorado River Valley Field Office and the Eagle County portion of the Kremmling Field Office, along with Eagle, Garfield, and Pitkin Counties will revert from Stage 2 to Stage 1 fire restrictions on Friday September 18.
“As fire restrictions are scaled back to Stage 1, public land visitors are asked to be cautious with fires in places where they are allowed,” said Colorado River Valley Field Manager Larry Sandoval.

“Large fires in Colorado and across the West are still impacting availability of firefighting resources, so we urge everyone to do their part to prevent human-caused fires. Stage 1 fire restrictions prohibit the following acts:
• Building, maintaining, attending, or using a fire or campfire except within approved fire grates at developed recreation sites.
• Smoking, except in an enclosed vehicle or building, developed recreation site, or while stopped in an area at least three feet in diameter that is clear of flammable materials.
• Operating a chainsaw without a USDA or SAE approved, working spark arrestor and properly installed, a chemical fire extinguisher of at least 8 ounces capacity by weight, and one round-point shovel with an overall length of at least 36 inches.
• Using a welder, either arc or gas, or operating acetylene or other torch with open flame, except in cleared areas of at least 10 feet in diameter with a chemical fire extinguisher of at least 8 ounces capacity.
• Using exploding targets.

Grand, Jackson, Moffat, Rio Blanco, Routt, and Summit counties, along with BLM’s White River, Little Snake, and Kremmling Field Offices in those counties, will remain in Stage 2 fire restrictions. The need for and level of fire restrictions are evaluated each week. Decisions are based on local conditions, including recent and predicted weather, drought, occurrence of human-caused fires, fuel moisture, likelihood of ignition, and whether existing fires are currently affecting availability of wildland firefighting resources.

BLM fire restriction orders and maps of restriction areas are available at Northwest District Fire Restrictions page. General information about fire restrictions throughout Colorado is available at http://www.coemergency.com/p/fire-bans-danger.html.

Fire restrictions will be in place until further notice. In addition to criminal penalties, those found responsible for starting wildfires may also face restitution costs of suppressing the fire.

BLM: Mixed bag of Stage 1 and 2 fire restrictions in northwest Colorado

National Interagency Team: Pine Gulch Fire Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER)

BAER stands for Burned Area Emergency Response, a federal program that addresses post fire effects on public lands. Wildfires can cause complex ecological problems, from severe loss of vegetation and soil erosion, to a decrease in water quality, and flash flooding. The BAER program addresses post-fire emergency stabilization of these and other post wildfire problems, in order to protect public safety and prevent further degradation of the landscapes.

The BAER assessment team composition is determined both by the size of the fire and the nature of values potentially threatened by post-fire effects. Generally, specialists in soils, hydrology, geology, engineering, wildlife, botany, and archaeology assess the fire’s effects and predict the post-fire effects. Each resource specialist brings a unique perspective to the BAER process, to help the team rapidly determine whether the post-fire effects constitute urgent threats to human life, safety, property, or critical natural and cultural resources and to produce an integrated plan to respond to those threats.

The objective of the BAER program is to determine the need for and to prescribe and implement emergency treatments on federal lands to minimize threats to life and property resulting from the effects of a fire or to stabilize and prevent unacceptable degradation to natural and cultural resources. During the assessment stage, the BAER process may identify values at risk on private of other jurisdiction lands, those issues will be communicated to the cooperators. Severely burned areas, steep slopes, places where water runoff will be excessive, fragile slopes above homes, businesses, municipal water supplies, and other valuable facilities are focus areas.

The BAER Team for the Pine Gulch Fire is currently working with the Fire Management Team, local agencies, has began analyzing data, developing projection models, and will begin working with landowners and stakeholders on findings.

Find more information about BAER Teams.

National Interagency Team: Pine Gulch Fire Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER)

Pine Gulch Fire update

Pine Gulch Fire statistics:
Size:
139,007 acres
Containment: 95%
Total personnel: 253
Location: Approximately 18 miles north of Grand Junction, CO
Reported: July 31, approximately 5:15 p.m.
Cause: Lightning

Special notes: The Bureau of Land Management has reduced its area closure, opening up access to areas outside the fire perimeter. Areas inside the fire perimeter are still closed. See closures, below.

Today the Southern Area Red team is being shadowed by personnel who will manage the incident as we return it back to local agencies tomorrow.

This is the last update on the Pine Gulch Fire as the Southern Area Red Team returns management of the incident back to local agencies Saturday morning. Please contact Eric Coulter, 970-628-5622, ecoulter@blm.gov for information after today. The Southern Area Red Team thanks local agencies, communities and landowners for their outstanding support and cooperation in managing the Pine Gulch Fire.

This morning, representatives from the Southern Area Red Team will join the Grand Junction Fire Department in their tradition of honoring first responders around the nation and the lives of firefighters who died responding to the Twin Towers in New York City on 9/11/2001. Fire service crews across Mesa County will hold a silent remembrance along major roadways, displaying the American flag from overpasses and saluting for three minutes and forty-three seconds to honor 343 firefighters who died on 9/11.

Current situation: Another 0.1- 0.2 in inches of rain fell on the Pine Gulch Fire yesterday, again hampering suppression repair efforts due to muddy roads. Continuing repair of areas damaged by firelines will resume when conditions allow. On the west side of the fire, priority areas for remaining suppression repair work are Douglas Pass, including Highway 139, Barrel Springs Road, County Road 256 and East Salt Creek. In the fire’s interior, priority areas are along Lonesome Ridge. Suppression repair is almost complete on the east side of the fire.

A Burned Area Emergency Response Team is using remote sensing and field observations to gather data to evaluate post-fire effects and recommend actions. The team is comprised of various experts in fields such as hydrology, biology, soil science, computer modeling, vegetation management, archaeology and recreation.

Weather forecast and fire behavior: Today will be mostly cloudy as a low pressure system moves out to the east. High temperatures at low elevations will be 62-69 degrees and at high elevations 45-55 degrees. Relative humidity will be 30-55 percent. Winds will be mostly terrain-driven, 4-11 mph, with gusts up to 25 mph. Drier air will spread across the area today and tomorrow as a ridge of high pressure builds over the Intermountain West. This pattern will promote warmer and drier conditions through the weekend.

Recent wetting rain & snow on the fire have significantly impacted the fire, there are no areas of concern for fire behavior, perimeter growth or fire spread.

Area closure: The Bureau of Land Management area closure has been reduced to lands managed by the agency in the fire perimeter only. Garvey Canyon Road, Coal Gulch Road and 21 Road are open only to the point at which they meet the fire’s edge. Areas beyond them in the fire perimeter are closed. There is no public road access to Barrel Springs Canyon.
For more information, see www.facebook.com/BLMColoradoFire

Open areas:
• County Road 256 east of Douglas Pass
• Coal Canyon
• Southshale Ridge and Corcoran Peak
• Public Lands North of Roan Creek (Garfield County 204)
• Mount Garfield hiking trail to foot travel
• North Fruita Desert (18 Road) campground and bike trails, including the Sarlaac Trail.
• Winter Flats Road, (Mesa County V 2/10 Road)
• Brush Creek and Carr Creek Roads (Garfield County 209 and 207)

The Edge Loop is open to the fire edge, but the Bureau of Land Management recommends users turn around at the mouth of Lippan Wash.

Emergency alerts: For Garfield County, please visit garco911.com. Mesa County alerts, please visit bit.ly/Emergency_Alerts.

Temporary flight restrictions: A Temporary Flight Restriction is in place over the Pine Gulch Fire. Wildfires are a No Drone Zone. If you fly, we can’t. For more information, visit http://knowbeforeyoufly.org.

For more information:
Information office:
(970) 628-0130, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Media inquiries: (970) 812-3706, 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Email: 2020.PineGulch@firenet.gov
Inciweb: https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/6906/
Facebook: https://facebook.com/PineGulchFireCO
Interactive fire map: https://arcg.is/W0izr
Highway information: https://cotrip.org/home.htm

Equipment and personnel: 1 Type 2 hand crew, 3 engines, 1 bulldozer, 2 water tenders and overhead/support personnel.

Pine Gulch Fire update

Pine Gulch Fire update – focus on suppression repair

Pine Gulch Fire statistics:
Size:
139,007 acres
Containment: 95%
Total personnel: 269
Location: Approximately 18 miles north of Grand Junction, CO
Reported: July 31, approximately 5:15 p.m.
Cause: Lightning

Today’s update: With no fire behavior, many of our firefighters and engines have left the Pine Gulch Fire to help with the too many fires burning out west. We thank them for their service and wish them safe travels! Now the focus here is on suppression repair and fire effects.

Current situation: Another 0.1 inches of rain fell on the Pine Gulch Fire yesterday, making total rainfall since Tuesday about one inch.

Wet weather has increased confidence in fire containment and management, so many firefighters and pieces of firefighting equipment have been released from the fire. The remaining focus of the incident is suppression repair, ensuing actions taken to fight the fire, such as building firelines, do not have long-lasting impacts to natural resources. This work will be managed by a smaller incident management team beginning Saturday.

On the west side of the fire, priority areas for remaining suppression repair work include Douglas Pass, including Highway 139, Barrel Springs Road, County Road 256 and East Salt Creek. In the fire’s interior, priority areas are along Lonesome Ridge. Suppression repair is almost complete on the east side of the fire.

A Burned Area Emergency Response Team arrived at the Pine Gulch Fire yesterday. This team, comprised of various experts in fields such as hydrology, biology, soil science, computer modeling, vegetation management, archaeology and recreation, will work with local specialists to evaluate post-fire effects. They will use remote sensing and field observations to gather data and recommend actions.

Weather forecast and fire behavior: Today will be mostly cloudy as a low pressure system slowly moves out of the area. Chance of rain is 50 percent with isolated thunderstorms in the afternoon possible. High temperatures at low elevations will be in the upper 50s and at high elevations in the upper 40s, continuing to melt snow on ridges. Relative humidity will be 35-60 percent. Winds will be mostly terrain-driven, 4-11 mph, with gusts up to 20 mph. A warming and drying trend will continue through the weekend.

With predicted weather and recent wetting rain and snow on the Pine Gulch Fire, fire behavior is not a concern.

Area closure: A Bureau of Land Management area closure is in effect for lands managed by the agency in the fire area. Areas are closed beyond the following road junctions:

• 266 Road at Highway 139
• County Road 200 at County Line
• 21 Road at entrance to Hunter Canyon
• 16 Road at V8/10 Road
• County (Roan Creek) Road 204 at 209 intersection
• End of V2/10 Road at BLM closure
• Q 5/10 Road at 18 Road
• Garvey Canyon Road

For more information, see BLM Colorado Fire

Open areas:
• County Road 256 east of Douglas Pass
• Base of Bookcliffs
• Coal Canyon
• North Fruita Desert, 18 Road, campground and bike trails
• V 2/10 Road north of the Wild Horse Management Area
• Mount Garfield hiking trail to foot travel

Emergency alerts: For Garfield County, please visit garco911.com. Mesa County alerts, please visit bit.ly/Emergency_Alerts.

Temporary flight restrictions: A Temporary Flight Restriction is in place over the Pine Gulch Fire. Wildfires are a No Drone Zone. If you fly, we can’t. For more information, visit http://knowbeforeyoufly.org.

For more information:
Information office:
(970) 628-0130, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Media inquiries: (970) 812-3706, 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Email: 2020.PineGulch@firenet.gov
Inciweb: https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/6906/
Facebook: https://facebook.com/PineGulchFireCO
Interactive fire map: https://arcg.is/W0izr
Highway information: https://cotrip.org/home.htm

Equipment and personnel: 1 Type 2 hand crew, 2 helicopters, 3 engines, 2 bulldozers, 3 water tenders and overhead/support personnel.

Pine Gulch Fire update – focus on suppression repair

Pine Gulch Fire at 95 percent containment

Pine Gulch Fire statistics:
Size: 139,007 acres
Containment: 95%
Total personnel: 323
Location: Approximately 18 miles north of Grand Junction, CO
Reported: July 31, approximately 5:15 p.m.
Cause: Lightning

Current situation: Passage of a cold front yesterday sent temperatures plummeting 40 degrees lower than the day before. Many areas of the fire were at or below freezing. The cold, combined with rain and snow throughout the day, caused firefighters and heavy equipment to stand down after moving equipment to areas with good footing. Approximately 0.5 to 0.75 inches of rain fell, with 1-4 inches of snow above 6,500 feet. Today, firefighters will continue to monitor and patrol the Pine Gulch Fire from good roads and backhaul unneeded equipment. With cool and wet weather and containment approaching 100 percent, firefighters and firefighting equipment continue to demobilize from the fire and the incident management team continues preparation to return management of the fire to local agencies.

Assessing and repairing damage from fire suppression will continue throughout the fire perimeter and interior as conditions allow to ensure that actions taken to fight the fire, such as building firelines, do not have long-lasting impacts to natural resources. Priority areas for remaining work include the Douglas Pass area on the west side of the fire (Divisions D/E), including Highway 139, Barrel Springs Road and County Road 256. In the fire’s interior, priority areas are along Lonesome Ridge on the western side of the fire.

Weather forecast and fire behavior: Today will be mostly cloudy, becoming partly sunny in the afternoon. A low pressure system remains over the area with a 60 percent chance for precipitation. The best chance for rain and snow showers (as low as 6,000 feet) is early to mid-morning. More showers, including isolated thunderstorms, could develop during the afternoon and evening. Another 0.10 to 0.30 inches of rain could fall. High temperatures at low elevations will be in the upper 40s and at high elevations near 40 degrees. Relative humidity will be 35-60 percent. Winds will be from the northeast, 7-15 mph, with gusts up to 20 mph. A slow warming and drying trend will begin tomorrow.

No fire perimeter growth is expected today. Given the weather, there are no areas of concern in the Pine Gulch Fire for fire behavior. Light live and dead vegetation will be wet and unlikely to burn, heavy material will remain mostly shaded by cloud cover and will continue getting moister.

Area closures: A Bureau of Land Management area closure is in effect for lands managed by the agency in the fire area. Areas are closed beyond the following road junctions:

  • 266 Road at Highway 139
  • County Road 200 at County Line
  • 21 Road at entrance to Hunter Canyon
  • 16 Road at V8/10 Road
  • County (Roan Creek) Road 204 at 209 intersection
  • End of V2/10 Road at BLM closure
  • Q 5/10 Road at 18 Road
  • Garvey Canyon Road

For more information, see www.facebook.com/BLMColoradoFire

Open areas:

  • County Road 256 east of Douglas Pass
  • Base of Bookcliffs
  • Coal Canyon
  • North Fruita Desert, 18 Road, campground and bike trails
  • V 2/10 Road north of the Wild Horse Management Area
  • Mount Garfield hiking trail to foot travel

Emergency alerts: For Garfield County, please visit garco911.com. Mesa County alerts, please visit bit.ly/Emergency_Alerts.

Temporary flight restrictions: A Temporary Flight Restriction is in place over the Pine Gulch Fire. Wildfires are a No Drone Zone. If you fly, we can’t. For more information, visit http://knowbeforeyoufly.org.

Equipment and personnel: 2 Type 2 hand crews, 2 helicopters, 12 engines, 8 bulldozers, 6 water tenders, 1 skidgen and overhead/support personnel.

For more information:

Information office: (970) 628-0130, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Media inquiries: (970) 812-3706, 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Email: 2020.PineGulch@firenet.gov
Inciweb: https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/6906/
Facebook: https://facebook.com/PineGulchFireCO
Interactive fire map: https://arcg.is/W0izr
Highway information: https://cotrip.org/home.htm

Pine Gulch Fire at 95 percent containment

Pine Gulch Fire update – containment 87 percent

Pine Gulch Fire Statistics:
Size: 139,007 acres
Containment: 87%
Total personnel: 390
Location: Approximately 18 miles north of Grand Junction, CO
Reported: July 31, approximately 5:15 p.m.
Cause: Lightning

Special note: Today’s rain may cause areas of debris slides or gully washes. Please use caution when driving on dirt roads. Please note there is still an area closure in effect for the fire (see below).

Current situation: Firefighters continue to monitor and patrol the Pine Gulch Fire from good roads, especially in the northwest area of the fire along Highway 139 and County Road 266. With cooler and wetter weather and containment approaching 100 percent, firefighters and firefighting equipment are demobilizing from the fire and the incident management team is preparing to return management of the fire back to local agencies by the end of the week.

Assessing and repairing damage from fire suppression continues throughout the fire perimeter and interior to ensure that actions taken to fight the fire, such as building firelines, do not have long-lasting impacts to natural resources. Good progress is being made as hand crews work in tandem with heavy equipment. Yesterday grinding up brush along the X5/10 Road to County Road 200 (Division A) was completed and the masticator will be released from the incident today. Suppression repair work will continue today, including work along Roan Creek Road (204) in Division Z and on County Road 222 in Division A on the east side of the fire, and work in the Douglas Pass area on the west side of the fire (Divisions D/E), including Highway 139, Barrel Springs Road and County Road 256. In the fire’s interior, repair will continue in the Lonesome Ridge area on the western side of the fire. Today’s weather will help suppression repair work by dampening soil that was loose and dry so that graders and other equipment can repair roads without the use of water tenders.

Weather forecast and fire behavior: “It’s going to be pretty nippy out there,” said incident meteorologist Andrew Deemer, as on the heels of a Red Flag Warning Day, a strong cold front moves through. Today will be mostly to partly cloudy with 100 percent chance of wetting rain. Rainfall totals for the day are likely to be 0.25-.50 inches. Snow will likely remain above 8,000 feet where 2-4 inches is possible. High temperatures at low elevations will be near 50 degrees and at high elevations near 40 degrees. Relative humidity will be 30-45 percent. Winds will be from the north, 10-15 mph, with gusts at low elevations up to 25 mph and on ridges up to 45 mph. Strong gusts could persist for much of the day and subside after sunset. Wednesday morning temperatures will be cold, dropping into the low 40s/upper 30s in the lowest elevations. The freeze level could drop as low as 6,500 feet.

No fire perimeter growth is expected today. Given the weather, there are no areas of concern in the Pine Gulch Fire for fire behavior. Fine live and dead vegetation will be wet and unlikely to burn, but heavier materials are still extremely dry and may continue to smolder in sheltered locations. Potential for fire growth outside of current firelines is low.

Area closures: A Bureau of Land Management area closure is in effect for lands managed by the agency in the fire area. Areas are closed beyond the following road junctions:

  • 266 Road at Highway 139
  • County Road 200 at County Line
  • 21 Road at entrance to Hunter Canyon
  • 16 Road at V8/10 Road
  • County (Roan Creek) Road 204 at 209 intersection
  • End of V2/10 Road at BLM closure
  • Q 5/10 Road at 18 Road
  • Garvey Canyon Road

For more information, see www.facebook.com/BLMColoradoFire

Open areas:

  • County Road 256 east of Douglas Pass
  • Base of Bookcliffs
  • Coal Canyon
  • North Fruita Desert, 18 Road, campground and bike trails
  • V 2/10 Road north of the Wild Horse Management Area
  • Mount Garfield hiking trail to foot travel

Emergency alerts: For Garfield County, please visit garco911.com. Mesa County alerts, please visit bit.ly/Emergency_Alerts.

Temporary flight restrictions: A temporary flight restriction is in place over the Pine Gulch Fire. Wildfires are a No Drone Zone. If you fly, we can’t. For more information, visit http://knowbeforeyoufly.org.

Equipment and personnel: 3 Type 2 hand crews, 2 helicopters, 7 engines, 5 bulldozers, 5 water tenders, 1 masticator, 1 skidgen and overhead/support personnel.

For More Information:

Information office: (970) 628-0130, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Media inquiries: (970) 812-3706, 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Email: 2020.PineGulch@firenet.gov
Inciweb: https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/6906/
Facebook: https://facebook.com/PineGulchFireCO
Interactive fire map: https://arcg.is/W0izr
Highway information: https://cotrip.org/home.htm

Pine Gulch Fire update – containment 87 percent

Forest Service and BLM modify Grizzly Creek Fire closure area

GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colo. – The White River National Forest and Bureau of Land Management are modifying the closure area for the Grizzly Creek Fire beginning Friday, Sept 4.

The closure area is being reduced to better align with current fire suppression and suppression repair activities.

“We know there is a lot of interest in accessing these areas for recreation, including hunting,” said BLM Colorado River Valley Field Manager Larry Sandoval. “We’ve reduced the closure area where it is safe to do so.”
“We still have more than 600 personnel working this 32,000-acre fire, which is not fully contained,” said White River National Forest Supervisor Scott Fitzwilliams. “Many areas near the Grizzly Creek Fire remain closed for firefighter and public safety.”

The Coffee Pot Road and Transfer Trail Road remain closed. The western boundary of the closure includes Forest Service Roads 602 and 637.
The Boy Scout/Lookout Mountain, Grizzly Creek, Hanging Lake, Mitchell Creek, and No Name trails are closed. The recreation areas and boat ramps on the Colorado River from Dotsero through Glenwood Canyon to No Name are closed. Above Dotsero, Cottonwood Landing is open to put in and take out. Lyons Campground is open to take out only.

The Sweetwater Road is open and offers an alternate access point into the eastern Flat Tops Wilderness. Clinetop Mesa Road is open. The Heart Lake and Deep Lake area is open and accessible from the west. The BLM trails at Onion Ridge and Keyser Creek are open.

The BLM and White River National Forest will continue to review area closures and will modify further if circumstances allow.

Maps of the closure are available online at https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/6942/, https://www.fs.usda.gov/whiteriver, and https://www.blm.gov/colorado.

Forest Service and BLM modify Grizzly Creek Fire closure area

RMIMT: Pine Gulch Fire at 139,000 acres, 77 percent containment

Pine Gulch Fire statistics:
Size:
approximately 139,006 acres
Containment: 77%
Total personnel: 915
Location: Approximately 18 miles north of Grand Junction, CO
Reported: July 31, approximately 5:15 p.m.
Cause: Lightning

Special Notes: Because of more accurate mapping yesterday that included previously unburned islands within the fire perimeter, the Pine Gulch Fire is now 139,006 acres, making it the largest wildfire in Colorado history. Firefighting efforts on the Pine Gulch Fire have been highly successful; the fire is now 77% contained.

The Rocky Mountain Type 1 Incident Management Team will be transitioning command of the Pine Gulch Fire to the Southern Area Type 1 Red Team on Sunday morning, August 30. Members of the Southern Area team are beginning to arrive today, and tomorrow will be a “shadow day” where members of both teams work closely together to ensure an efficient and thorough transition.

Garfield county has removed the pre-evacuation for all areas west of Hwy 139 to the Utah border. BLM closures in the fire area have been reduced, but some are still in effect: www.tinyurl.com/PineGulchBLM.

Current situation: Yesterday, most of the observed fire activity was interior burning of unburned fuels that posed no threat to containment lines. Similar behavior is expected today, with minimal chance of spread outside the fire perimeter. Interior burning is most likely in the East Salt Creek area in Division F and on the west side in Division D.

More containment was added to all sides of the Pine Gulch Fire, including on the northeast in Division K, the south side at the Division A/B break, along Hwy 139 in Divisions D and E, and in the East Salt Creek area in Division F. There is still some open line and heat in the area near the Division A/B break, but there has been no fire movement for many days. Similarly, there is still open line and heat in Divisions B and D in the Munger Creek area, but no movement, and this area will be monitored from Hwy 139 as well as from the air. Fire above the retired mine near Hwy 139 has checked itself in natural barriers with no recent movement.

Today, crews in Divisions K, Z, and A will patrol and monitor as well as backhaul unneeded equipment including structure protection equipment near homes on the Roan Creek Rd. In Divisions F, handline created by hotshots in the East Salt Creek area is complete; however, there are still several days of work left to completely mop-up and secure this edge. This area is steep and severe terrain that is accessible only by foot, so this work requires time and patience.

As activity on the Pine Gulch Fire quickly diminishes, fire managers are rightsizing the organization to appropriately fit the current needs. Many resources will be demobilized today so that they can be sent to other fires where the need is now greater. A nighttime operational period is no longer necessary on the Pine Gulch Fire; all future work will be performed during daytime hours.

Focus is now on structure suppression repair (actions that help minimize damage to soil, water, and other resources directly attributable to fire suppression activities) and rehabilitation of impacted areas. Resource Advisors will work with crews to direct efforts, and today these efforts will begin in the SE corner of the fire in Division A.

Weather & fuel conditions: Today brings more chances of thunderstorms starting at 12 p.m. with the potential for wind gusts up to 40 mph. There is a 10% chance of wetting rain. Maximum temperature is around 89 with 19-22% minimum relative humidity. Winds are forecast from the southwest at 5-8 mph with gusts up to 17. There is an increasing chance for thunderstorms and moisture in the coming days. As the chance of rainfall increases, so does the threat of flash flooding and debris flow. Any new fire starts in the vicinity still have significant potential for growth.

Evacuations and pre-evacuations: Evacuations and pre-evacuations are changing in Garfield County as fire activity decreases. Please go to: www.garfield-county.com and scroll down to the “evacuations” tab for the most recent updates. There are currently no pre-evacuations or evacuations in Mesa County: www.sheriff.mesacounty.us/FireInformation. Closures: Roan Creek Road (204) at North Dry Fork (200). The 21 Road north of the BLM boundary, 16 Road at V 8/10 Road, and the Q 5/10 Road is closed at 18 Rd. Some BLM lands in the fire area are still closed. Please see: www.tinyurl.com/PineGulchBLM.

Air quality: Air quality health advisories may be issued in areas near the Pine Gulch and Grizzly Creek fires. A smoke outlook for the Pine Gulch Fire is available where this update is posted and at https://fires.airfire.org/outlooks/WesternColorado. For more information on smoke levels, please visit https://airnow.gov.

Emergency alerts: For Garfield County, please visit garco911.com. Mesa County alerts, please visit bit.ly/Emergency_Alerts.

Temporary flight restrictions: A Temporary Flight Restriction is in place over the Pine Gulch Fire. Wildfires are a No Drone Zone. If you fly, we can’t. For more information, visit http://knowbeforeyoufly.org.

Resources include: 3 Type 1 hand crews, 9 Type 2 hand crews, 7 helicopters, 60 engines, 13 bulldozers, 26 water tenders, and overhead/support personnel.

For more information:
Information office:
(970) 628-0130, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Media inquiries: (970) 812-3706, 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Email: 2020.PineGulch@firenet.gov
Inciweb: https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/6906/
Facebook: https://facebook.com/PineGulchFireCO
Interactive fire map: https://arcg.is/W0izr
Smoke outlook: https://fires.airfire.org/outlooks/WesternColorado

RMIMT: Pine Gulch Fire at 139,000 acres, 77 percent containment

RMIMT: Pine Gulch Fire 53 percent contained, minimal growth yesterday

Pine Gulch Fire Update – August 27, 2020 – 8:30 a.m.

Pine Gulch Fire statistics:
Size:
approximately 135,958 acres
Containment: 53%
Total Personnel: 935
Location: Approximately 18 miles north of Grand Junction, CO
Reported: July 31, approximately 5:15 p.m.
Cause: Lightning

Current situation: There was minimal growth on the Pine Gulch Fire yesterday (38 acres). Active fire spread outside the fire perimeter should be limited again today due to successful containment lines. Most fire activity will be interior burning when fire picks up pockets of unburned fuels. Today, this is most likely on the west side in Division D, where smoke may be seen coming from within the fire perimeter.

Crews were highly successful in their efforts to build direct control line in the East Salt Creek area of Division F, and this control line is holding well. Today, heavy equipment operators will work to complete secondary control lines north of there. More containment was added in Division K yesterday, and the Pine Gulch Fire is now 53% contained. In Divisions K, Z, and A, firefighters are backhauling unneeded equipment. Some equipment and personnel will be released so they can be utilized on other fires in the region where the need is greater. The fire near the Division A/B break shows no signs of breaching containment lines, and Divisions B and D are in patrol and monitor status. Crews in Division E will work on any remaining mop-up needs.

The overall focus on the Pine Gulch Fire is quickly shifting from fire suppression to suppression repair. Suppression repair involves actions that help minimize damage to soil, water, and other resources directly attributable to fire suppression activities. Firefighters will work with specialists called Resource Advisors who will help ascertain needs.

Thunderstorms were widespread just north of the fire yesterday with one moving directly over the eastern half of the fire. This prompted a brief Flash Flood Warning for the eastern half of the Pine Gulch fire. There was a small amount of debris flow near Kimball Creek Rd. More thunderstorms are predicted, and these bring the potential for debris flows and flash flooding.

Weather & fuel conditions: The chance of thunderstorms will continue. Any storms that develop could produce winds gusts up to 40 mph. There is a 15% chance of wetting rain. Maximum temperature is around 90 with 19-22% relative humidity. Winds are forecast from the west-southwest at 8-11 mph with gusts up to 19. The coming days bring more chance for thunderstorms with similar chance for gustier winds. As the chance of rainfall increases, so does the threat of flash flooding and debris flow. While there has been moisture in the area, its effects will be short term because of continued drought conditions; any new fire starts in the vicinity still have the potential for growth.

Evacuations: Garfield County: 4A Ridge Road (256), Salt Wash (205), King Road (258), Clear Creek Road (211), Carr Creek Road (207), Kimball Creek Road (202). A pre-evacuation order is in effect for all residents of Garfield County west of CO-139 to the Utah border, and any formerly evacuated residents remain in pre-evacuation. For more information: www.garfieldcounty.net. There are currently no pre-evacuations or evacuations in Mesa County: www.sheriff.mesacounty.us/FireInformation.

Closures: Roan Creek Road (204) at North Dry Fork (200). The V 2/10 Rd. at the 44 Rd, Coal Canyon Rd. just past the Cameo Shooting Range. The 21 Road north of the BLM boundary, 16 Road at V 8/10 Road, and the Q 5/10 Road is closed at 18 Rd. BLM lands north of Loma, Fruita, Grand Junction, and Palisade. Please see: www.tinyurl.com/PineGulchBLM

Air quality: Air quality health advisories may be issued in areas near the Pine Gulch and Grizzly Creek fires. A smoke outlook for the Pine Gulch Fire is available where this update is posted and at https://fires.airfire.org/outlooks/WesternColorado. For more information on smoke levels, please visit https://airnow.gov.

Emergency Alerts: For Garfield County, please visit garco911.com. Mesa County alerts, please visit bit.ly/Emergency_Alerts.

Temporary flight restrictions: A temporary flight restriction is in place over the Pine Gulch Fire. Wildfires are a No Drone Zone. If you fly, we can’t. For more information, visit http://knowbeforeyoufly.org.

For more information:
Information office:
(970) 628-0130, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Media inquiries: (970) 812-3706, 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Email: 2020.PineGulch@firenet.gov
Inciweb: https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/6906/
Facebook: https://facebook.com/PineGulchFireCO
Interactive fire map: https://arcg.is/W0izr
Smoke outlook: https://fires.airfire.org/outlooks/WesternColorado

Resources include: 3 Type 1 hand crews, 10 Type 2 hand crews, 8 helicopters, 66 engines, 14 bulldozers,
26 water tenders, and overhead/support personnel

RMIMT: Pine Gulch Fire 53 percent contained, minimal growth yesterday

NWS: Flash flood warning for Pine Gulch Fire burn area

8.26.20, 3:36 p.m. – The National Weather Service in Grand Junction has issued a flash flood warning for the Pine Gulch Fire burn area in southwestern Garfield County until 6:30 p.m. tonight, Aug. 26. At 3:36 p.m., Doppler radar indicated thunderstorms producing heavy rain over the Pine Gulch Fire burn area. Between 0.25 and 0.5 inches of rain have fallen. Flash flooding is ongoing or expected to begin shortly.

Excessive rainfall over the burn scar will result in debris flow moving through the Pine Gulch Burn area. The debris flow can consist of rock, mud, vegetation and other loose materials.

This is a life-threatening situation. Heavy rainfall will cause extensive and severe flash flooding of creeks, streams and ditches in the Pine Gulch Burn Area. Severe debris flows can also be anticipated across roads. Roads and driveways may be washed away in places. If you encounter flood waters, climb to safety.

NWS: Flash flood warning for Pine Gulch Fire burn area