Despite containment of the Pine Gulch Fire increasing to 17 percent, the growth of this blaze continues. Pine Gulch Fire has now reached 124,934 acres as of a Friday morning report – slower growth than has been seen in recent days, but still growth. This growth brings Pine Gulch Fire within 15,000 acres of the largest fire ever recorded in Colorado – Hayman Fire at 137,760 acres.
Considering that Pine Gulch Fire has experienced multiple days with growth of more than 15,000 acres, there's a good chance that the Pine Gulch Fire will eventually surpass this record-setting blaze unless it is soon stopped. Red Flag conditions continue and dry flora that's fueling the Pine Gulch fire remains ample. According to the official report on InciWeb, extreme fire behavior is possible again today and this evening thanks to gusty winds and dry lightning.
Pine Gulch Fire has recently reached a size and heat level that have allowed it to produce something called a "pyrocumulus cloud." This type of cloud is capable of producing its own storms, with the cloud above Pine Gulch Fire resulting in lightning.
According to a 10 AM report, a pre-evacuation notice is in effect for all Garfield County residents west of CO-139 to the Utah border. A number of evacuations and closures remain in place.
Find some of the most up-to-date information about this wildfire on the Pine Gulch Fire Facebook page.