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Pine Gulch Fire now 2nd largest in Colorado’s history

Stragglers are brought down on the Crystal River Ranch near Carbondale, Colo.
Photo by Monica Schwaller

Colorado’s Pine Gulch Fire, burning north of Grand Junction in Mesa and Garfield counties, has grown to 124,934 acres with 17 percent containment. Erratic fire behavior occurred Wednesday evening as thunderstorms developed in the area, with a chance for the same on Thursday. There are currently 893 personnel on scene. It is currently the second largest fire in the state’s history. The Hayman Fire in 2002 burned 138,114 acres.

The Grizzly Creek Fire, burning in Glenwood Canyon, has grown to 29,992 acres at press time, with 11 percent containment and 889 personnel. Portions of the fire received some rainfall Wednesday, but lightning strikes also occurred. The incident meteorologist, Matt Jeglum, said more rainfall is expected Thursday with lightning and strong winds in the area. He anticipates dry weather Friday and Saturday with increased chances of rain Sunday and into the following week.

The Cameron Peak Fire, burning near Red Feather Lakes, is at 16,602 acres and has 646 personnel on site. The Williams Fork Fire, near Fraser, is mapped at 10,288 acres and 3 percent containment.

The Colorado Cattlemen’s Association continues to coordinate trailers and assistance for producers affected by the Grizzly Creek Fire. CCA Executive Vice President Terry Fankhauser said the first responders and the state veterinarian’s office have both been helpful and he appreciates their help and dedication.

Ginny Harrington, a rancher and secretary of the Holy Cross Cattlemen’s Association, said Crystal River Ranch, which her husband, Tom, manages, has been affected. Crews have been able to move all but seven pairs down to dry pastures and they hope to return soon to bring the rest down. As for the Largent family near Debeque, Amy said some calves and cows remain unaccounted for. ❖

— Gabel is an assistant editor and reporter for The Fence Post. She can be reached at rgabel@thefencepost.com or (970) 768-0024.


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