High Park Fire

The High Park Fire is 100% contained and will no longer be updated on WildlandFires.Info.
More information is available at:

The Arapaho & Roosevelt National Forests Pawnee National Grassland website,
970-295-6600, or visit

Larimer County
City of Ft Collins Air Quality Information
Larimer County Sheriff’s Office Road Closure Information
Arapaho & Roosevelt National Forests Pawnee National Grasslands Fire Restrictions and Fire Area Closure Order (pdf)
High Park Fire Relief and Recovery Assistance Guide (pdf)
HelpColoradoNow

FEMA Fire Disaster Assistance

High Park Fire Photos on Flickr (Colorado National Guard)

Fort Collins, Colo. (July 19, 2012) – An interagency Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER) team has identified potential treatments for the High Park Fire burn area.

The team was comprised of resource specialists from the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), Larimer County, Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) and the U.S. Forest Service (USFS). BAER teams consider potential immediate post-fire impacts to human life and safety, property, and cultural and natural resources. The USFS is responsible for addressing concerns on National Forest System lands and the NRCS through the Emergency Watershed Protection (EWP) program and a partnership with a local sponsor works to address similar threats and concerns on non-Federal lands.

An interagency report has been prepared and summarizes watershed information, areas of concern, values at risk and proposed treatment. The High Park Fire burned over 87,200 acres on multiple land jurisdictions. Of the burned acres within the fire perimeter, 32,302 burned at a low severity; 35,399 at a moderate severity; and 5,714 at a high severity. More than 14,000 acres within the perimeter were unburned. Emergency treatments considered include land treatments, road and trail treatments, protection/safety treatments, and, for the USFS, cultural resources.

CDOT is planning potential rock scaling operations to help prevent more rockslides onto Highway 14 by taking down already loose rocks.

Aerial mulching is planned for 5,604 acres on National Forest System (NFS) lands, with no treatments proposed in the Cache la Poudre Wilderness. Possible treatments for private lands include aerial mulching and seeding of an additional 5,657 acres. Most of the land would be mulched with weed-free agricultural straw, but some could use wood shreds or wood straw. Areas planned or proposed for aerial mulching to reduce erosion are in high and moderate soil burn severity and on slopes between 20% and 60%. They are also strategically located in areas where life, safety, or property is at risk or where there is high risk to public water supply.

Additional possible treatments on private lands include barriers or other measures to reduce damage from sediment and debris; clearing channels and drainage ways; warning signs; and increasing the size of culverts on county roads and providing some protection from erosion to reduce the risk of flood flows overtopping and washing out portions of these roads.

Other planned treatments/responses on NFS lands include road repairs or closures; temporary closures of areas, including USFS trails; warning signs; noxious weed detection and treatment; hazardous tree cutting (of immediate threats); and trail stabilization.

In total, the BAER assessment identified approximately $24 million in potential emergency stabilization treatments to address the impacts of the High Park Fire. Roughly $17 million in possible treatments is identified for public roads and private lands. Approximately $9.9 million of these treatments may be eligible for 75% federal funding through the EWP program, but the Federal funding currently available for Colorado falls far short of this amount. The cost for local sponsors and private landowners would be around $9.3 million. No source for these local funds has been identified yet.

Please continue to check http://inciweb.org/incident/2904/ for the latest information on the fire and updates on BAER activities.

###

FIRE OVERVIEW

Containment is now 100%. The Incident Command Post is located at the Pingree Park Campus. Fire crews continue patrolling the fire perimeter, mopping up hot spots near the edge of the fire perimeter and conducting fireline rehabilitation. Precipitation assisted control efforts on the southwest portion of the fire yesterday. Chipping operations will be very active along Buckhorn road today, the public should be cautious of additional equipment due to these activities. Additional resources will be patrolling in the Glacier View area to concentrate efforts on extinguishing hot spots that threaten containment or residences, and extinguish small smoke reports.

SAFETY

The public is reminded to drive cautiously and reduce speed when travelling on roads near the fire. Drivers should stay alert for firefighters and their vehicles or equipment, distracted drivers, and rocks on the roads.

ASSESSMENTS

The total number of homes lost remains at 259. Details of this are available in the assessment article to the right. The number of homes destroyed may still increase as assessments are completed.

RECREATION AND CLOSURE INFORMATION

All county roads are open, including Highway 14. In the lower Poudre Canyon (Hwy 287 to Pingree Park Road), recreational access is limited to river access only; except the modifications for Closure Order #10-05-2012-07, provided here (see associated map). The following sites are OPEN: Fish Creek Trail, Dutch George Campground, Upper Narrows Campground, Stove Prairie Landing, Lower Ansel Watrous Campground, Ouzel Day Use Site, Poudre Park Day Use Site, Jack’s Gulch, Kelly Flats Campground, Century Park Day Use Site, Upper Landing Day Use Site, and Stevens Gulch Day Use Site. The following sites are CLOSED: Bennett Creek Picnic Site, Mountain Park Campground, Greyrock and Greyrock Meadows Trails, Lower Narrows Campground, Upper Ansel Watrous Campground, Young Gulch Trail, Diamond Rock Day Use Site, and Hewlett Gulch Trail. The closure prohibits all activities within an area of the Canyon Lakes Ranger District bounded by County Road 44H on the south, the High Park Fire northern perimeter on the north, the forest boundary on the east, and 300ft west of Pingree Park Road on the west, as depicted on the attached map. The closure includes Forest Service Roads in the area.

This closure also restricts dispersed recreation on the lands identified. Developed areas will be closed for the coming days or weeks until they are assessed to determine when they can be safely opened. In the upper Poudre Canyon, limited camping opportunities will begin Monday, July 2. Contact the U.S. Forest Service for specific information on closures and restrictions at http://www.fs.usda.gov/arp.

FIRE RESOURCES

2 Type 3 Helicopters

Heavy Air Tankers (available if needed)

13 Engines

2 Type 2 Hand Crews

3 Water Tenders

1 Dozer

RELATED INFORMATION

Larimer County opened the High Park Fire Disaster Recovery Center on June 15, at Johnson Hall on the Colorado State University Campus. The center is open Mon.-Fri. from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sat.-Sun. from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The center will likely remain open for 3-4 weeks. More information about the Disaster Recovery Center at Larimer.org. Tetnus shots are available for evacuees here.

Register cell phones for notifications at leta911.org.

Estimated final cost of the fire is $39.2 million.

Basic Information

Incident Type Wildfire
Cause Lightning On Private Land
Date of Origin Saturday June 09th, 2012 approx. 05:54 AM
Location appx. 15 miles west of Fort Collins
Incident Commander Ken Paul

Current Situation

Total Personnel 152
Size 87,284 acres
Percent Contained 100%
Estimated Containment Date Sunday July 01st, 2012 approx. 12:00 AM
Fuels Involved 10 Timber (litter and understory) Grass, Brush, and Timber
Fire Behavior The fire continues to smolder. Record low live fuel moistures with high temperatures and low relative humidity will promote rapid fire growth if a start were to occur outside the fire perimeter.
Significant Events A Type 3 management team is in place and the Incident Command Post is located at Pingree Park Campus.

Outlook

Planned Actions Fire crews continue patrolling the fire perimeter, mopping up hot spots near the edge of the fire perimeter and conducting fireline rehabilitation. Precipitation assisted control efforts on the southwest portion of the fire yesterday. Chipping operations will be very active along Buckhorn road today, the public should be cautious of additional equipment due to these activities. Additional resources will be patrolling in the Glacier View area to concentrate efforts on extinguishing hot spots that threaten containment or residences, and extinguish small smoke reports. Hot spots may continue to exist well within the perimeter of the fire during the containment phase and residents should expect to see smoke for days and weeks as the fire moves from containment to control.
Terrain Difficulty High
Remarks An interagency Burned Area Emergency Response team has conducted their first field visit to gather information and observations to determine how to reduce impacts of post-fire conditions. Coordination continues with local authorities to facilitate assessment and re-entry into previously evacuated subdivisions. Acres by ownership: Private: 39,570/State: 5,022/U.S. Forest Service: 42,634/Bureau of Land Management: 28/Bureau of Reclamation: 30. Threat to residences is minimal due to increased fire containment.

2 responses to “High Park Fire

  1. John N

    The High Park Fire Disaster Recovery Center closed on July 6 (http://bit.ly/LRckyX), after being open for 3 weeks.

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