Above: Junkins Fire. Undated photo by the Incident Management Team.
The Junkins Fire has spread very little over the last two days. Most of the changes to the perimeter have been on the south side east of Highway 165, and on the northeast side south of Greenwood.
The number of personnel assigned has grown to 918. The latest size estimate is 18,132 acres. Evacuation orders are still in effect for County Road 387. Highway 165 and Custer County Road 358 are now open, however some spur roads in the fire area remain closed.
Firefighters are working on containing the northern flank, progressing east from Highway 165. Indirect dozer and hand line will be constructed along the Hardscrabble Creek drainage in preparation for planned firing operations. The northeast and eastern divisions remain in monitor and patrol status with engines continuing to secure areas around structures.
Along the southern portion of the fire, crews continue burning operations where needed, constructing direct line where possible. Multiple water sources have been established to assist as mop up operations continue.
Above: Map of the Junkins Fire, October 21, 2016. The black line is completed fireline, while the red line is uncontained. Produced by the incident management team.
(UPDATED at 10:48 a.m. MDT October 22, 2016)
The number of structures burned in the Junkins Fire west of Pueblo, Colorado has been updated. Officials are now saying 8 homes and 19 outbuildings burned, but only one of the homes was a primary residence. The incident management team is still calling the fire 17,809 acres.
The last of the evacuation orders for the portion of the fire in Pueblo County have been lifted. Evacuations are still in effect in some areas of Custer County.
The number of personnel and equipment assigned to the fire has significantly increased, to 722.
The map below shows heat detected by an aircraft at 12:18 a.m. MDT October 22, 2016.
(Click HERE to view our most recent article about the Junkins Fire.)
(UPDATED at 4:31 p.m. MDT October 19, 2016)
The Junkins fire west of Pueblo, Colorado, according to mapping on October 18, has burned 16,832 acres. Fire officials said Wednesday a shortage of firefighting resources is slowing the construction of firelines and the containment of the fire. In fact, they are saying firefighters have not contained any of the fire.
It started during strong winds on October 17 when a power line failed and hit a barbed wire fence.
A Type 1 Incident Management Team from the Great Basis assumed command of the fire on Wednesday.
The Junkins Fire 21 air miles west of Pueblo, Colorado had burned 15,751 acres when mapped by one of the state’s Multi-Mission Aircraft at 7 p.m. on Monday. The fire continued to spread after that flight, particularly on the south and the northeast sides, and an updated acreage should be available after it is mapped again this morning.
Much of the activity of the firefighters has been defensive, staging firefighting resources well outside the fire perimeter to protect structures. Tuesday afternoon should bring winds out of the southwest and east, so a priority will be the structures along Highway 96.
Some of the geographic Divisions are larger than desired due to a shortage of resources, according to Planning Operations Section Chief Dan Dallas.
East of County Road 387 the fire has burned into the large scar from the 2005 Mason Fire, slowing the spread. Monday night one of the most active sections of the fire was on the northeast side, between County Road 387 and the fire scar.
The county Sheriff said another residence burned Monday night, bringing the total up to two homes and 5 outbuildings that have burned.
Tuesday morning 114 personnel were assigned to the fire. Aircraft being used include 2 large air tankers, 4 single engine air tankers, 2 large helitankers, 2 national guard helicopters, a lead plane, and the Multi-Mission Aircraft. Operations Section Chief Dallas said he expected the aircraft will be used more heavily today than yesterday.
(UPDATED at 6:30 p.m. MDT October 17, 2017)
The Junkins Fire about 25 miles west of Pueblo, Colorado has burned about 13,300 acres according to a 3:30 p.m. update from fire officials. Approximately 80 personnel are on scene. One residence and three outbuildings have been destroyed. Part of the fire has spread into a an old burn from 2005, which slowed the progress of the fire in that area.
A Type 3 Incident Management Team is running the fire now, but a Type 1 Team has been ordered.
(UPDATED at 12:34 p.m. MDT October 17, 2016)
A fire that was reported at 3:40 a.m. MDT on Monday has already burned thousands of acres and forced evacuations about 29 miles west of Pueblo, Colorado. The Westcliffe Daily Record reported at 10:46 that the Junkins Fire has blackened approximately 11,000 acres. It is burning in the general vicinity of McKenzie Junction, the intersection of Highways 165 and 96, eight miles southwest of Wetmore.