Colorado has already seen its fair share of wildfires this season. The 416 and Burro Fires ignited in early June and are still raging. Almost daily Red Flag conditions have punished the state and resulted in explosive fire growth. Late Wednesday evening (June 27th), strong winds and exceptionally dry conditions resulted in another new start close to the New Mexico border.
The Spring Fire broke out just east of Alamosa, Colorado and quickly began spreading towards the community of La Veta. On Thursday a sparse crew of firefighters accompanied by limited air resources attempted to gain the upper hand but had to retreat as the fire, pushed by 35+ mph winds, tore through over 4000 acres of rough terrain.
Today (Friday June 29th), fueled by another day of Red Flag conditions, the fire exploded to over 24,000 acres and has jumped CO 160, forcing the closure of the highway. Over 2,500 people have been evacuated from the area between Fort Garland and La Veta. A Type II Incident Management team arrived with additional resources this morning to manage the large out of control wild fire.
- Location:10.2 Miles W of La Veta, CO, Huerfano County
- Size: 33,956 acres
- Containment: 0%
- Fire Behavior: Rapid fire spread due to erratic winds, dry conditions, and high temperatures.
- Structures Destroyed: Structures reported lost but no official number released at this time.
- Incident Link: Inciweb
- Weather Forecast: Weather.gov
The Red Flag Warning remains in effect until tonight at 2100 MDT but will likely be renewed tomorrow due to another day of high temperatures, low humidity, and winds reaching 20 mph. With temperatures being in the mid 80s well into next week, it’s not likely that crews will contain this wildfire anytime soon.