Cameron Peak Fire engulfs homes as largest blaze in state history rages on
Runs from the Cameron Peak Fire have taken the blaze up to 169,171 acres with more structures in the fire’s path destroyed.
The Cameron Peak Fire began Aug. 13 on the Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests near Cameron Pass and Chambers Lake. It has burned into the northern portion of Rocky Mountain National Park and sparked numerous evacuations and closures for the affected areas.
A Type 1 incident management team took command of the fire Wednesday after high winds and more dry weather grew the blaze to the largest in Colorado history. The new team signals increasing complexity and danger associated with combating the fire.
Still, firefighters reported “a successful day” attacking the flames on Thursday with air resources including three large air tankers and four type one helicopters.
According to the US Forest Service, 1,119 personnel are currently working the fire, which is estimated at 56% containment.
There’s little relief in the immediate forecast, though.
Today will bring another Red Flag Warning with adverse weather conditions expected to set in and continue through Saturday evening. Periods of heavy smoke are likely, especially in Larimer County.
On Wednesday, Larimer County Sheriff Justin Smith confirmed on Facebook that this week’s runs had engulfed structures.
“A home is more than a structure,” Smith wrote in the post. “It represents family, achievements and oftentimes a lifetime of memories.
“Watching homes get burned up in the fire (Wednesday) was absolutely heartbreaking. I wish we could tell every home or property owner immediately if there homes were damaged or destroyed in today’s tremendous fire run. However, given the amount of area burned … it’s likely to be a few or several days before we have all those answers.”
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