FIRES UPDATE: Multi-agency crews making progress on new Red Canyon Fire southeast of Glenwood Springs

Fire personnel on scene at the Red Canyon Fire in Spring Valley on Wednesday night. The fire was estimated to be roughly 20-40 acres in size. Both ground crews and air support began fighting the blaze shortly after it was started by lightning around 5 p.m.
Chelsea Self / Post Independent

UPDATE 6:45 p.m. Wednesday — Fire resources reported making “excellent progress” on the new Red Canyon Fire from both the air and ground.

“Dozer line is being constructed, and a night shift will be on scene,” according to the Grizzly Creek Fire command, which has taken over public information in the effort to fight the lightning-caused blaze.

Fire managers were also keeping an eye on other potential lightning strikes as a thunderstorm with lots of wind and lightning, but little rain, was moving over the area headed toward Basalt.

UPDATE 6 p.m. Wednesday — The new fire has been renamed the Red Canyon Fire. It broke out just after 4 p.m. Wednesday near Fisher Cemetery Road and Garfield County Road 115 (Red Canyon). There is active lightning in the area.

UPDATE 5:20 p.m. Wednesday — The Red Canyon Fire is reported to have grown to between 25 and 40 acres. Carbondale Fire is doing structure protection, and working with Interagency and the Garfield County Sheriff’s Office on evacuations.

Fire commanders working the nearby Grizzly Creek Fire have indicated that the new blaze was caused by lightning, and have renamed it the Red Canyon Fire.

The fire is burning north of Garfield County Road 115 (Red Canyon), and new evacuations are in place for south of 115 road, north of County Road 113 (upper Cattle Creek) and west of 121 Road (Coulter Creek).

Type 1 and Type 2 helicopters, as well as several single-engine air tankers, seven engines and a water tender from the Grizzly Creek Fire responded and are working to suppress the fire.

UPDATE 4:30 p.m. Wednesday — Carbondale and Rural District fire officials have called in backup to deal with a new fire about five miles south of the Grizzly Creek Fire in upper Spring Valley along Garfield County Road 115 (Red Canyon).

The fire was reported at approximately 4 p.m. Wednesday at 20 acres and growing rapidly, with 50-foot flames, Carbondale & Rural Fire Protection District is reporting.

“Upon arrival firefighters found a fire rapidly moving through the area,” according to a press release posted to the district’s Facebook page.

The new fire is being referred to as the Fisher Creek Fire, and evacuations in are in progress for High Aspen Ranch, Coulter Ranch and Homestead Estates. Some of those areas were already part of the Grizzly Creek Fire evacuations.

Roaring Fork High School in Carbondale is being established as an evacuation site. Updates are being posted at the CRFPD Facebook page.

Several structures in the area are reportedly threatened, and fire is moving to the south-southeast.

Grizzly Creek Fire PIO Brian Scott said the new fire is unrelated to the fire burning above Glenwood Canyon.

“We’ve agreed as part of our work to be available for initial attack, and are sending some of our resources down there,” Scott said. Support includes engines for structure protection, tenders that can haul water and some aircraft, he said.

En Espanol

Aproximadamente a las 4 p.m. el Distrito de Protección de Incendios de Carbondale y Rural recibieron llamada de un incendio forestal en el área de Spring Valley.

Cuando llegaron los bomberos encontraron un incendio que se movía rápidamente en el área. El incendio es aproximadamente 20 acres y creciendo. Residencias de High Aspen, Coulter Ranch y Homestead Estates están siendo evacuados.

El centro de evacuación es en la escuela de Roaring Fork High School.

Es una situación en evolución. Actualizaciones estarán en la pagina de Facebook Carbondale Fire a medida que sea disponible.

This is a developing story and will be updated.

Grizzly Creek Fire growth slower Tuesday, now at about 28,000 acres and 4% contained

Work on Tuesday to build containment lines at key locations on the Grizzly Creek Fire perimeter, including at No Name Creek and on Lookout Mountain near Glenwood Springs, have resulted in 4% containment of the fire that began in Glenwood Canyon on Aug. 10.

“Fire suppression activity today will include the completion of indirect fire line to the top of Windy Point, along the Transfer Trail,” according to the Wednesday morning update from the Grizzly Creek Fire command. “This line is a contingency line in the event fire moves out of the No Name Creek drainage.

“Above the French Creek drainage, crew will also work to complete control lines. Scattered pockets of heat remain along the fire line from I-70 north towards Coffee Pot Road.

“Much of today’s efforts will be on the south side in Bair Ranch from Ike Creek east to Spruce Ridge where fire spotting potential remains high.”

Also today, Xcel Energy is working in Glenwood Canyon to the east of No Name replacing power poles that had burned and repairing infrastructure. 

“Crews will continue to engage the fire where they safely can, with additional consideration in the next few days of weather concerns, including the potential for dry lightning and gusty winds,” according to the Wednesday update. 

Watch today’s Operations Briefing from Jeff Surber, Operations Section Chief for the Great Basin Type 1 Team:

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