Forest Service lifts area closures as Silver Creek Fire reaches 80 percent containment |

Forest Service lifts area closures as Silver Creek Fire reaches 80 percent containment

Sky-Hi staff report
Area closures for the Silver Creek Fire as of Oct. 18, 2018.

While the Silver Creek Fire is still burning in spots across its 20,120-acre footprint, the fire has reached 80 percent containment, enough for the U.S. Forest Service to lift area closures.

A short-term closure of Forest Road 100 (Buffalo Park Road) remains in place adjacent to and within the Silver Creek Fire area while suppression repair is completed.

The fire is an extended-duration incident which has neither been declared fully contained — fireline perimeter that holds — nor controlled — out, according to officials. Typically, officials said, area closures would remain in place until one or both of the above results have been achieved. However, due to current snow cover, the time of year, decreased fire personnel in the areas, and lack of fire activity, Forest Service staff feels comfortable re-opening the areas for public use.

The public may access and use the fire areas, however, both fires may still be smoldering. They are not expected to be declared controlled until there is a season-ending snow event. Season-ending is defined as significant snow expected to remain on the ground for the season.

Forest staff will continue to monitor the fire areas as they remain in patrol status.

Caution is urged in burned areas, as trees may have been weakened by the fire and could easily fall. The burn area will have many ‘snags,’ or standing dead trees that are fire weakened and highly unstable, especially in high winds.

The Silver Creek Fire has been burning on the Routt and Arapaho National Forests, in Grand and Routt counties, since July 19.

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