Sand Spring Fire burns northwest of Craig |

Sand Spring Fire burns northwest of Craig

Craig Press Staff
Fire personnel attend to the Sand Spring Fire west of Craig.
Barry Steadman/For Craig Press

High winds may have been to blame for spreading a grassfire northwest of Craig on Tuesday.

The fire was reported shortly after noon near Moffat County roads 64 and 15, and burned an estimated 303 acres, according to Craig Fire/Rescue Chief KC Hume.

“It was really windy,” Hume said Tuesday afternoon during a lull in the firefighting. “The wind we experienced this afternoon to the northeast certainly intensified the fire growth.”

Fire personnel with Craig Fire/Rescue, Moffat County Road and Bridge, and others succeeded in sparing oil and gas infrastructure in the area as well as dozens of small ranches and homes, but still no word on what caused the fire.

“We’ll know more when we conclude our investigation,” Hume said.

Hume pointed out the quick, but heavy rain event that washed through Craig about noon Tuesday didn’t affect the dry, arid areas northwest of Craig.

“We received significant rains in Craig just prior to the start of this fire,” Hume said. “But this area did not receive any of the perception we saw in Craig. It’s dry. It’s the tail end of summer.”

Air assets had to be called in to help crews on the ground.

“We had aerial resources on scene as well,” Hume said. “We had one heavy air tanker and two SEATs (single engine air tankers).”

An air tanker drops flame retardant on the Sand Spring Fire northwest of Craig Tuesday, Sept. 17.
Wyatt Oberwitte/Courtesy Photo

Hume said the entire area is still at risk of fire until snows come.

“It can burn up until the time there’s snow on the ground,” Hume said.

Crews will continue to monitor the fire for the next 48 hours.

“The threat has been mitigated, but resources will remain on scene for the next couple of days making sure the hot spots have been addressed,” Hume said.

There were no injuries to livestock or humans in the area and no structures were reported lost.