Lake Christine Fire
Fire Start Date: July 3, 2018, Location: Between the towns of El Jebel and Basalt
Fire Information Sources:
Update: Fri 7/20 Community Meeting update: [VIDEO]
FIRE WEATHER: In the next few days there will be return of moisture to the area, with increase of showers and thunderstorms over the Lake Christine Fire area. Weather-related threats to fire fighting efforts include gusty winds and cloud to ground lighting. In the event of heavy rainfall the team will heavily monitor for the potential for flooding and debris flow in the surrounding areas, especially in the burn scare areas. Next week there is the potential for daily thunderstorms and warmer temperatures. The likelihood for moisture will decrease beyond Monday.
INCIDENT MANAGEMENT: The new Type 2 team took command on Friday morning. Most of the day was spent strategizing the best and safest way to approach the fire. The team is looking suppress the fire as fast as they can, but the safety of the fire fighters and the public comes first. There will soon be a new plan that will allow for making progress on the fire, but the fire will continue to burn, until there is a major event. The goal of wildland firefighters is to slow down the growth of the fire. As the fire continues to burn it becomes more of a nuisance. Please be patient – we will get through this
Division N (West/Northwest area of the fire by the Spring Park Reservoir) – The fire has been somewhat active in this area, crews are working to contain the western most portion of the fire line using a variety of methods. More staff is being added to this area and more planned for Saturday.
Division S (Northern section near Cattle Creek) – Resources are being put toward the structures on Cattle Creek in order to protect them, including hose lays (extending hose from a water source to the fire, allowing the delivery of water safely and effectively). More staff is being brought in to to reinforce work being done in order to make it safer for fire fighters.
Division W (Eastern section, Fryingpan/Seven Castles area) – Several resources are in the area. Firefighters were able to cut hand lines above the Seven Castles area, and they are planning and implementing a hand line down one of the ridges to the Fryingpan. Work will continue tomorrow with a large hose order incase the fire moves in that area. The team feels much better about how they would handle the fire if it moves in that direction, pulling it away from homes. By putting fire lines into place it allows the team to fight the fire on their terms. If the fire continues towards the Fryingpan area, hot shot crews and other specialists are able to put fire on the ground in a less intense manner. A less intense burn also reduces the chance of flooding.
Swing division (Southern section near the Town of Basalt) – Crews are out working the containment line area on the southern border of the fire. Engines continue to patrol the area at night.
FIRE ACTIVITY: Most of the fire growth has been to the North/Northeast, which is the location of the big smoke column. There are some active fires elsewhere within the larger zone, but the bulk of the fire is in the northern area. The fire’s growth typically slows at night due to the higher humidity and lower temperatures.
A note about wildland fire – the fire teams don’t put it out, they simply stop the spread of the fire so it doesn’t burn what we care about. Even when the fire gets to 100% containment, we will still see smoke.
In terms of fire growth, spot fires (see the little island of fire to the east of the main fire) tend to get to a new area first, but typically the main fire follows right behind it. The pre-evacuation notices helps buy everyone some time. If you see flying glowing embers, this is bad as it can ignite fuel sources.
EAGLE COUNTY UPDATE: Flood typically follows fire, and the risk of a flood can last seven years after a fire incident. Eagle County has posted tips on its website. The county is highly encouraging property owners to talk to their insurance agents, as general homeowners insurance doesn’t always cover flooding. Residents (and renters) in the area are eligible to purchase flood insurance through the in the FEMA national flood insurance program [More details are posted on the page Returning home on this site. NOTE: Insurance may have up to a 30 day waiting period before it goes into effect.
Reminder – please register for the county alert systems [See the “How to get information” section below this for links.]. The incident command team will continue to use all alert system to send out messages.
PRE-EVACUATIONS: Pre-evacuations for Fryingpan area are out of abundance of caution (miles 1-7). This is so residents are prepared in case the weather changed quickly and moved the fire. The pre-evac notice will stay in place until the area is deemed safer.
Update 7/19/18 @ 7:40 p.m.
Missouri Heights is still under pre-evacuation notice. Details.
Update 7/13/2018: Basalt and El Jebel are open for business!
As for the Fryingpan/Ruedi Resevoir area, Incident Command feels that the area is safe, and that the fire is under control. The fire is currently 43% contained, and the fire’s progress has slowed significantly (see the darker portions of the map for the most recent areas burned). The fire team is pushing the fire into areas where it cannot find fuel (aka rocks), so the overall risk is low.
Fryingpan River Road and Ruedi Resevoir are open,
however there is a possibility of smoke and Stage 2 fire restrictions are in place!
The portion of the White River National Forest that is closed is predominately focused around Basalt Mountain (areas north of the Fryingpan River), and does not impact the river or the resevoir.
Update 7/6/2018: Lake Christine Fire:
For general information regarding this incident call 970-445-4911.
- Old US Hwy 82.
- Mandatory evacuations have been ordered for residents in close proximity to the fire including the El Jebel Mobile Home Park and Missouri Heights.
- The Federal Aviation Administration has implemented a temporary restriction of the airspace over the Lake Christine Fire area. Check with airlines or go to http://www.aspenairport.com for commercial flight updates.
The fire in the Roaring Fork Valley is located in the Basalt/Willits Area, 35 Miles South-East of Glenwood Springs. Currently traffic is still moving on Hwy 82.. So far this has not affected our community other than smoke and air quality.
Our hearts go out to the displaced families and our thoughts are with all the amazing firefighters doing the best they can!
Garfield & Eagle County Sheriff’s FB page have up to date information about the fire!
Stage 2 Fire Restrictions
The 2018 summer season is one of the Roaring Fork Valley’s driest after being in a drought for several years.
Snowpack and precipitation levels are extremely low creating very dry conditions.
Simple negligence can spark a fast-moving fire in these unfavorable conditions.
- No open fires or campfires.
- No charcoal or wood fires for cooking.
- No smoking except in an enclosed vehicle or building.
- No operating any combustion engine without an approved spark arrestor.
- No welding or spark emitting cutting except for industrial use w/ permit.
- No use of any explosive (blasting caps, bullets, model rockets, tracer rounds, etc.)
- No fireworks (toy caps, sparklers, snakes, smoke bombs, fountains, etc.) 9 7 0 – 3 8 4 – 6 4 8 0
Further fire information on other fires in Colorado:
Colorado is dedicating unprecedented resources toward containing the three active fires in the state. A number of state agencies are working around the clock to contain the fires that have begun at the beginning of an especially hot and arid summer season in Colorado.
Colorado is the eighth largest state in the U.S. and most of its 104,100 square miles remain unaffected by fire. The state’s two main airports, Denver International Airport and Colorado Springs Airport, have experienced no flight cancellations or visibility issues. Despite the wildfires, most of the southwest area of Colorado is still open for business.
It is important to stay current on fire conditions across the state, but visitors can still expect to enjoy a memorable Colorado vacation the majority of Colorado’s destinations.
The Colorado Tourism Office is working closely with the communities being impacted by the fires. It is too early to assess the impact of the fires on Colorado’s tourism industry. All of our resources are dedicated to communicating the situation on the ground as it relates to visitors to Colorado.
Up-To-Date Information on location and status of fires:
Up-to-date information on location and status of the fires can be obtained via the Colorado Division of Emergency Management;
Twitter at @COEmergency) and the Inciweb Incident Information Center
Prevention of Fires: What can you do!?
As Colorado gears up for a busy summer travel season, the state urges people to travel responsibly, especially when it comes to fire prevention.
Colorado’s low humidity has perks but can create dry, dangerous fire conditions. Below are tips and resources for Colorado travelers to help prevent wildfires and protect our great outdoors:
• Keep campfires small and manageable.
• Never let a fire burn unattended.
• Properly maintain and watch campfires.
• Do not build a fire at a site in hazardous, windy or dry conditions. Check to see if campfires are permitted.
• Do not build a fire if the campground, area or event rules prohibit campfires. Check with the campground or forest representative.
• Use an existing fire ring or fire pit. If there is not an existing fire pit, and pits are allowed, look for a site that is at least fifteen feet away from tent walls, shrubs, trees or other flammable objects. Also beware of low-hanging branches overhead.
• Supervise children and pets when they are near fire.
• Never cut live trees or branches for fires.
• Fire restrictions and bans are set by local jurisdictions and by individual forest agencies. Check with the local sheriff’s office, fire department or the federal forest agency before lighting a campfire this summer.
• If you think it isn’t safe enough to light a campfire — choose to be safe and not start one.
• Properly extinguish and dispose of cigarettes.
• When putting out a fire, water it until you can handle the embers.
Extinguish your campfire properly by following these steps from Smokey Bear and US Forest Service:
1. Allow the wood to burn completely to ash, if possible.
2. Pour lots of water on the fire, drown all the embers, not just the red ones.
3. Pour until hissing sound stops.
4. Stir the campfire ashes and embers with a shovel.
5. Scrape the sticks and logs to remove any embers.
6. Stir and make sure everything is wet and they are cold to the touch.
7. If you do not have water, use dirt. Mix enough dirt or sand with the embers. Continue adding and stirring until all material is cool. Remember: Do not bury the fire as the fire will continue to smolder and could catch roots on fire that will eventually get to the surface and start a wildfire.