Pine Gulch Fire north of Grand Junction grows to nearly 12,000 Acres

August 6, 2020 | 1:43 p.m.  MDT

Pyrocumulus clouds form over the Pine Gulch Fire
Pyrocumulus clouds form over the Pine Gulch Fire north of Grand Junction, Colorado, August 5, 2020. Photo by Jennifer Deering.

Since the lightning-caused Pine Gulch Fire was discovered July 31 it has burned 11,846 acres 15 miles north of Grand Junction, Colorado. It was very active on Wednesday with most of the growth, an additional 6,161 acres, occurring on the northeast and northwest sides. The fire is expanding beyond lands managed by the Bureau of  Land Management onto private property.

(To see all articles on Wildfire Today about the Pine Gulch Fire, including the most recent, click HERE.)

Aerial resources are available again Thursday to assist firefighters on the ground. Four more engines and additional crews will be added to a “swing shift.” These crews will work the late afternoon to early morning hours on the south side of the fire to continue operations initiated during the day.

Map Pine Gulch Fire Grand Junction Colorado
Map of the Pine Gulch Fire at 9:31 p.m. MDT August 5, 2020.

A Red Flag Warning is in effect in the area from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. due to  gusty winds and hot, dry conditions. The forecast calls for wind gusts of 25 to 30 mph in the afternoon with very low humidity – near 10%. Conditions over next two days will be critical on the fire as activity is expected to increase, with the potential for high rates of spread.

Resources on the Pine Gulch Fire include 4 hand crews, 16 engines, 4 helicopters, and a variable number of air tankers for a total of 292 personnel.

A Type 2 Incident Management Team led by Incident Commander Troy Hagan is assigned.

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Author: Bill Gabbert

After working full time in wildland fire for 33 years, he continues to learn, and strives to be a Student of Fire.