EVERGREEN, Colo. (CBS4) – A wildfire sparked near Evergreen Monday afternoon. Firefighters say the Elephant Butte Fire burning on Upper Bear Creek Road west of the Evergreen Golf Course.

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Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office officials say 2,950 CodeRed phone calls, 1,070 text messages and 826 emails have been sent. At least 700 homes, as many as round 1,000, have been evacuated.

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“Total evacuation area is now Upper Bear Creek Road south to Brook Forest Road east to Highway 73,” the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office stated on social media. “You should leave immediately.”

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Evacuees are asked to head to King Murphy Elementary at 425 Circle K Ranch Road or Evergreen Middle School on Hiwan Drive.

Large animals and livestock can be taken to the county fairgrounds. Pets can be taken to the Foothills Animal Shelter in Golden.

Evacuation orders were not expected to be lifted overnight.

The American Red Cross has also responded to help residents and firefighters.

The fire is estimated to be 50 acres as of 6:50 p.m. There is 0% containment.

(credit: Jefferson County)

At least 100 firefighters from various agencies responded, and multiple aircraft are helping douse the flames by scooping up water from Evergreen Lake.

However, firefighters were pulled from the ground fight because of the threat of lightning.

Evergreen fire officials say two hotshot crews are examining the situation to determine whether firefighters can return. Firefighters will likely be on scene through the late night hours.

RELATED: Family Watches Elephant Butte Fire Burn Land They’ve Had For 100 Years

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It is not clear how the fire started, or whether any structures are threatened.

The Evergreen Lake House is also closed as it is being used as a command center for firefighters.

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Jeffco Open Space closed the Alderfer/Three Sisters Park because of the fire.

  1. Michael Corn says:

    Why are people allowed to build houses up in the dense forest lands and not required to clear a fire defense zone around their houses. Insurance companies should pay every penny of the cost of these fires, then tax payers in urban areas don’t have to pay the the fires and floods that occur in these undefendable areas.

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