Breckenridge fire: 25 percent contained as of Saturday morning, official says
Peak 2 fire hasn’t grown much, but biggest problems remain rugged terrain
Continuing a recent string of good news, Dave Schmitt of the Rocky Mountain Incident Response Team reported gains in containing the Peak 2 fire burning roughly 85 acres between Breckenridge and Frisco, saying that containment rose overnight Friday from about 7 percent to 25 percent Saturday morning.
All evacuations were lifted Friday night, and the Peak 7 neighborhood was reopened to the public today. However, the Peak 7 neighborhood will remain on pre-evacuation status until further notice because there is still a risk. The Farmer’s Korner, Gold Hill and Silver Shekel neighborhoods as well as the town of Breckenridge remain on pre-evacuation notice as well.
Peaks Trail, Gold Hill, Wheeler and Miners Creek trails remain closed. Parts of the Colorado Trail are closed where overlap occurs with trail closures in the area.
The fire hasn’t grown much since Wednesday, but the biggest problems remain rugged terrain making access difficult for crews and a large number of dead trees fueling the blaze.
“We’re pretty much where we were yesterday with the containment going up to 25 percent,” Schmitt said.
According to Schmitt, crews worked through the night to strengthen fire suppression lines to try and prevent the blaze from spreading. They were aided by Saturday’s overcast skies and the occasional light rain.
So far, Schmitt said, they have cut lines around about 60 to 70 percent of the blaze, and they’re hoping those lines will hold.
The biggest concern right now, Schmitt continued, is that weekend thunderstorms could bring high winds that whip up the flames again. If those winds are strong enough, he said, the fire could jump the containment lines, and they’re hoping that doesn’t happen.
Additionally, because of dry conditions and a high fire risk, burn bans remain in place across Summit County. Also, because crews are battling the blaze from the air, there is a temporary restriction on flying drones over the fire.
Another fire to the southeast of Breckenridge, named the Baldy Fire, was contained late Friday afternoon, according to fire crews, and a pre-evacuation notice issued to residents in Baldy Mountain neighborhoods on Friday was rescinded within two hours.
Anyone with specific questions about fire evacuations should call the public-information line at 970-668-9730.
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Kevin Warner started his career with the U.S. Forest Service as a wilderness ranger in 2001. Now he’s taking over the key position as Aspen-Sopris District Ranger.