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Ward Gulch Fire Evacuees Allowed Back Home

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RIFLE, Colo. (AP) – Residents near a 485-acre wildfire burning north of Rifle are back home.

Evacuation orders for the Ward Gulch Fire were lifted late Sunday after lower temperatures and a little moisture helped slow it down.

Fire spokesman Pat Thrasher said the fire was started Friday by a smoldering lightning strike three miles north of Rifle Gap Reservoir.

It also forced the evacuation of campers at Rifle Falls State Park, Rifle Mountain Park and the nearby White River National Forest.

The danger isn’t over yet though.

The National Weather Service says gusty winds and very warm weather will increase the fire danger in parts of western Colorado by midweek.

Wildfire Resources

- Visit CBSDenver.com’s Wildfire Resources section.

- Read recent Wildfire stories.

Wildfire Photo Galleries

- See images from the most destructive wildfires (Black Forest, Waldo Canyon, High Park and Fourmile) and largest wildfire (Hayman) in Colorado history.

(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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