U.S. Highway 40 remains in limbo as Silver Creek Fire grows | CraigDailyPress.com

U.S. Highway 40 remains in limbo as Silver Creek Fire grows

Matt Stensland/Steamboat Pilot and Today
Smoke from the Silver Creek Fire remains highly visible.
Courtesy Photo

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — The Silver Creek Fire burning southeast of Steamboat Springs remained menacing Saturday.

Between Wednesday and Saturday, the fire had more than doubled in size from a steady 5,008 acres to 10,559 acres, according to Saturday evening updates.

Containment is listed at 35 percent. Before the fire blew up, it was 76 percent contained.

According to cotrip.org, Colorado Highway 134 has been closed from mile marker 17 to 27, and U.S. Highway 40 remains in limbo.

“The fire isn’t going to close it,” said Clark resident Chuck Vale, who works for the Colorado Division of Emergency Management. “The smoke is going to close it. I think we’re OK.”

There are currently 275 people working on the lightning-caused fire.

Latigo Guest Ranch, the Yost Ranch, Gore Lakes and Old Park have been evacuated. Pre-evacuation notices have been issued for Rabbit Ears Village, Bear Mountain Ranch and the Lake Agnes area. Grand County issued an evacuation order for the Milk Creek State Wildlife Area.

The Rocky Mountain Incident Management Blue Team is now managing the fire. The team is lead by incident commander Michael Haydon.

The team is focusing efforts on preparing containment line to the northeast of the fire, which is the direction the wind has been going.

“This is the safest option with the highest probability of success,” the team stated in their Saturday report. “Personnel are actively engaging the fire where it is safe to do so and implementing a full suppression strategy.”

To reach Matt Stensland, call 970-871-4247, email mstensland@SteamboatPilot.com or follow him on Twitter @SBTStensland.