UPDATES: Wildland fire in South Routt County has grown to an estimated 100 acres
9 p.m.: The fire has been named the Muddy Slide Fire. Here is the updated story.
7 p.m.: Steamboat Pilot & Today reporter Dylan Anderson has been in Yampa covering the wildfire and took this photo of the smoke from the area where some of the firefighting crews are staging. He will be filing an updated story on the wildfire within the hour.
6:50 p.m.: An air quality advisory was issued at 6:30 p.m. for Routt, Rio Blanco, Garfield and Eagle counties by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. The smoke is due to both in-state and out-of-state wildfires. The advisory remains in effect until 9 a.m. Monday.
If smoke is thick or becomes thick, people may want to remain indoors, especially those with heart disease, respiratory illnesses, the very young and the elderly. Consider limiting outdoor activity when moderate to heavy smoke is present. If visibility is less than 5 miles, smoke has reached levels that are unhealthy.
6:45 p.m.: According to emergency management officials, there are about 40 buildings located within a mile of the fire, and 140 within five miles of the fire.
6:40 p.m.:The fire was initially estimated to be 25 to 30 acres based on an initial flyover. Since then, it has grown to at least 100 acres, according to one estimate from Routt County Emergency Management Director David “Mo” DeMorat. The fire is currently being fought aerially with one air tanker plane and one helicopter.
6:10 p.m.: A pre-evacuation notification for the vicinity of the Green Ridge/South Stagecoach area has been issued due to the wildland fire in the area. For additional information, visit Routt County OEM Facebook page.
5:25 p.m.: Reporter Kari Dequine Harden sent in this photo of smoke from the fire as seen from Finger Rock on Colorado Highway 131.
5:15 p.m.: Firefighting crews are now staging at the Muddy Slide trail head.
5 p.m.: The U.S. Forest Service has taken over jurisdiction of the fire since it is located in the Medicine Bow-Routt National Forest. Firefighting crews are staging at Lost Elk Ranch on Routt County Road 16, and the Forest Service will be coordinating the response.
Yampa Fire Protection District firefighters were dispatched to reports of a wildland fire to the east of the town of Yampa, near the cross sections of U.S. Forest Service roads 280 and 285, in southeast Routt County at around 3 p.m.
This has prompted pre-evacuation plans in the area, and scanner chatter indicates this may impact houses off of Routt County Road 16. Winds are blowing to the south and southeast, pushing the fire in that direction. The fire is starting to move down the ridge to the east.
Firefighters report seeing smoke from the backside of Muddy Slide Trail, and crews are staging near Toponas.
The interagency dispatch center in Craig has been alerted, as well as the U.S Forest Service and firefighters from the Oak Creek Fire Protection District, according to scanner traffic.
Yampa Fire Chief Machia Cox said he was heading out to the scene and didn’t have more details about the situation at this time.
The National Weather Service issued a red flag warning for Routt County on Sunday, which indicates conditions are ripe for fires to start and spread. Fire danger is considered extreme in the area of the fire.
This story will be updated.
To reach Dylan Anderson, call 970-871-4247 or email danderson@SteamboatPilot.com.
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