LARIMER COUNTY, Colo. (CBS4) – The Cameron Peak Fire burning in Larimer County grew to be the third-largest wildfire in state history. The fire has burned 124,021 acres as of Saturday evening — up from more than 104,000 on Friday.
The Spring Creek Fire burned 108,045 acres in Costilla and Huerfano counties in 2018.
Fire activity from the nearby Mullen Fire in Wyoming prompted voluntary evacuations for those living in the northwest corner of Larimer County — Roach and Hohnholz — on Saturday afternoon.
The Colorado Department of Transportation says Colorado Highway 127 is closed at the state line, and Colorado Highway 125 is closed where it meets CO 127.
CO 125 leads to Walden.
Mullen Fire officials issued their own mandatory evacuations for Wyoming residents. They suggest those being evacuated take Highway 10 south to Colorado’s County Road 80C (also known as Cherokee Park Road) and head east — otherwise they might encounter a road closure because of the Cameron Peak Fire.
Folks evacuating along the HWY 10 Corridor due to #MullenFire_WY should take County Rd 80C (Cherokee Park Rd) to the east once they have entered Colo. That is the best route. If they continue further south they will encounter a closed road due to the #CameronPeakFire. pic.twitter.com/mDG7zV7ZoT
— Medicine Bow-Routt NFs & Thunder Basin NG (@FS_MBRTB) September 26, 2020
Officials say dry, hot and windy weather helped the fire grow on Friday. They say the most activity is north of Highway 14 and the “thumb” area and an area near Comanche Reservoir.
Larimer County Sheriff Justin Smith shared his frustration with the Cameron Peak Fire on social media saying in part,
“Our staff actively monitors the Mullen Fire that started near Rob Roy reservoir in Albany and Carbon Counties in Wyoming. Up to 35,000 acres, it’s reported to be only 4 or 5 miles from the state line, near the Old Roach and upper Laramie River Road area of Larimer County. Our staff is in communications with the incident management team on that fire and continues to create evacuation plans in those areas, should they be needed. As bad as it is, I remain thankful for the snow following Labor Day. Without that snow, we would be in an even worse place now.”
Crews are expecting more wind and dry conditions on Saturday which might keep air operations grounded for some time.
“Crews and equipment will continue engaging the fire directly where there is a high probability of success and it is safe to do so,” officials stated on Inciweb.
The Larimer County Sheriff’s Office reports more structures are damaged along Highway 14 between the Fish Hatchery and Rustic. They say the fire is too active for crews to get in and assess the situation.
Homeowners are said to be notified if their home is damaged or unscathed as those assessments are finished.
Those living in Glacier View filings, Red Feather Highlands subdivision and the Lady Moon area were ordered to evacuate Friday evening.
The Cameron Peak Fire began Aug. 13. What caused it remains under investigation. The fire is 25% contained.
The Mullen Fire is burning about 60 miles north.