Friday Grizzly Creek Fire updates: Fire doubles in size, now bigger than Lake Christine Fire
Size: 13,441 acres
Hand Crews: 13, 20-person
Water Tenders: 2
Dozers as well as feller bunchers and other logging equipment on scene
Total Personnel: 352
Location: Glenwood Canyon
Started: Aug. 10, 2020
Cause: Under investigation
Management: Great Basin Type 1 Team (Adell)
The Grizzly Creek Fire in Glenwood Canyon made a major run late Thursday night, more than doubling in size to 13,441 acres (revised after a mapping flyover) with new areas of fire spread on the east and northeast sides of the canyon.
White River National Forest Supervisor Scott Fitzwilliams confirmed in a Friday morning press conference that the fire has burned in the area of Hanging Lake, the popular visitor attraction that now operates on a permit system.
“Right now we don’t know the disposition of Hanging Lake,” Fitzwilliams said in the press conference also attended by Gov. Jared Polis. “We know there was fire around it. We hope to get up and take a look at it today, and as soon as we find out we will let you know.”
By comparison in terms of fire size, the Grizzly Creek Fire is now more than 2,000 acres larger than the 2018 Lake Christine Fire on Basalt Mountain, which burned 12,588 acres.
Gov. Polis said reopening Interstate 70 would not happen before the weekend.
“The best realistic case would be two to three days,” Polis said. “But it’s really a question of when it’s no longer right on the highway.”
According to the latest morning update from incident command in Gypsum, “operations staff flew the fire late yesterday afternoon to access the northern area of the fire where the fire was the most active. The terrain and fuels in the northeast portion of the fire made access difficult for firefighters north of Interstate 70. The fire pushed east and went into Bair Ranch where evacuations were made.”
New maps show the most recent fire progression Thursday night into Friday morning.
Current Grizzly Creek Fire evacuations in effect, by order of the Garfield County Sheriff’s Office and the Eagle County Sheriff’s Office:
- No Name
- Lookout Mountain
- Homestead Estates
- Bair Ranch
- High Aspen Ranch
- Coulter Creek
- Cottonwood Pass
- Spring Valley Ranch
- Buck Point Drive
- Coffee Pot Road
- Sweetwater Road
For updated information about evacuations in Garfield County, contact the Sheriff’s Office at (970) 625-8095, in Eagle County call (970) 479-2201.
The American Red Cross of Colorado has opened an evacuation center at Battle Mountain High school in Edwards to assist residents who have been evacuated because of the Grizzly Creek Fire, according to the fire command center. Red Cross volunteers are ready to accommodate anyone needing information or other assistance. They will also have access to emergency supplies and support.
- Cottonwood Pass Road in Eagle and Garfield counties are closed
- Interstate 70 remains closed between Glenwood Springs and Gypsum. No estimated time to reopen. Visit http://www.cotrip.org for road closure information.
- Independence Pass is closed with no estimated time to reopen.
- Coffee Pot Road, Transfer Trail and Clinetop Mesa roads are closed, as are much of the lands of BLM and Forest Service in those areas. Closure maps are available on inciweb.
- Forest Service Road 400, Eagle-Thomasville Road, is closed due to excessive traffic and accidents.
This is a developing story and will be updated.
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