Silver Creek Fire remains fierce on Day 2 of flare-up | SteamboatToday.com

Silver Creek Fire remains fierce on Day 2 of flare-up

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — The Silver Creek Fire southeast of Steamboat Springs remained angry as it chewed through forest and threatened homes, as well as U.S. Highway 40.

The smoke plume could again be seen from Steamboat.

Between Wednesday and noon Thursday the fire had grown 1,862 acres with a total of 6,870 acres burned.

On Thursday, some residents in the Gore Pass area spent the evening watching the fire from an overlook near Latigo Ranch as air tankers made frequent retardant drops and a Chinook helicopter dropped water on hot spots.

A pre-evacuation notice has just been issued for residents in the Lake Agnes, Rabbit Ears Village, Bear Mountain Ranch, Old Park and Latigo Ranch areas due to increased fire activity.

Officials were still trying to evacuate hunters from the woods around Forest Service Road 100, which is known as Buffalo Park Road. They might find their campsites burned up when they return.

“They still have some guys that haven't come back to camp that they think are deep in the wilderness,” U.S. Forest Service spokesman Aaron Voos said. “That's still a priority, and they're still working on it.”

Plans are being developed to close U.S. Highway 40.

“They feel like they're close enough that they need to have a good plan in place,” Voos said.

A Type 2 incident management team has been ordered to come and manage the fire. They were expected to be at the Friday morning briefing.

Those teams as well as the air resources flying overhead are expensive.

Before Wednesday’s flare up, total cost estimates for the fire were $20 million.

“It will be significantly more than that,” Voos said.

To reach Matt Stensland, call 970-871-4247, email mstensland@SteamboatPilot.com or follow him on Twitter @SBTStensland.

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