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WFCF — Fire status is steady

Posted: Wednesday, Jul 17th, 2013

RIO GRANDE/MINERAL COUNTIES — It is the only fire left burning in the state, and holding steady as the second largest fire in Colorado history at 109,615 acres.

The West Fork Complex Fire (WFCF) has not changed much in the past few days, according to the incident report. The Papoose fire is the only fire on the complex that is staffed. The other fires on the complex will continue to be monitored by air and appropriate action will be taken as needed. Two, Type-3 helicopters remain dedicated to monitoring and will provide bucket drops and other fire support for this complex.

The next few days will bring a drier weather pattern into the fire area, according to the incident report. There will still remain isolated afternoon and evening thunderstorms, confined to the mountain areas. Humidity levels were anticipated to be 30-42 percent yesterday, which aided fire efforts. Flash flood watches with potential ash and/or debris flows remain in place in all three fire areas.

Current situation, Tuesday, July 16

Papoose Fire

49,628 acres

There is scattered interior heat on the fire that continues to be monitored. Crews will be working to fell dead and damaged trees along popular travel routes, including the River Hill campground. The backhaul of equipment will continue off of the fire line.

West Fork Fire, 58,570 acre, and Windy Pass Fire, 1,417 acres

There are very minimal areas of heat and smoke on this part of the fire. The fires will be monitored and appropriate action will be taken as needed.

Public Health and Safety

Smoke can be expected to be seen across parts of the fire for the next several days to weeks. The rain and winds have gone a long way towards clearing the air. For the Colorado Smoke Outlook, visit http://www.colorado.gov/airquality/colo_advisory.aspx or http://www.colorado.gov/airquality/wildfire.aspx for more information.

Area Road and Trail Closures:

For information on road and trail closures and fire restrictions affecting the San Juan National Forest go to: http://www.fs.usda.gov/alerts/sanjuan/alerts-notices.

For information on road and trail closures and fire restrictions affecting the Rio Grande National Forest go to: http://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/riogrande/.

Fire Statistics:

Total Personnel: 82

Resources Include: 1 Type-1 hand crews, 1 Type-2 hand crews, 5 engines, 2 Type-3 helicopters and 12 overhead personnel.

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