Monday, July 15, 2013

West Fork Fire Complex - July 15 Update

West Fork Complex Fire Update

Colorado Interagency Type III Team – Phil Daniels, Incident Commander    
Fire Information Phone:  719-569-4149 Voice mail only, calls will be returned as quickly as possible.
Hours of operation: 8:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.

July 15, 2013
10:00 a.m.                  

Special Message:  As of 6 p.m. July 14, the Colorado Interagency Team III assumed command of the West Fork Complex.

Current Situation:

The Papoose fire is the only fire on the complex that is currently staffed.  The other fires will continue to be monitored by air and appropriate action will be taken as needed.  Two, Type 3 helicopters remain dedicated to monitoring and when needed, provide bucket drops and other fire support for this complex. 

Weather:  The entire fire complex remains with strong chances for wetting rains throughout much of this week.  The moonsonal moisture will combine with an upper level flow pattern favorable for continued afternoon and evening shower and thundershower development.  Temperatures are currently cool, and expected to increase later this week returning to near normal levels. Flash flood watches with potential ash and/or debris flows remain in place in all three fire areas. 

Papoose Fire:  There is scattered interior heat on the fire that continues to be monitored.  Crews will be working to fell dead and damaged trees along popular travel routes, including the River Hill campground.   

West Fork Fire and Windy Pass Fire: There are very minimal areas of heat and smoke on this part of the fire.  The fires will be monitored and appropriate action will be taken as needed. 

Public Health and Safety: 
Smoke can be expected to be seen across parts of the fire for the next several days to weeks.  The rain and winds have gone a long way towards clearing the air. For the Colorado Smoke Outlook, visit or for more information.

Area Road and Trail Closures: 
For information on road and trail closures and fire restrictions affecting the San Juan National Forest go to: 

For information on road and trail closures and fire restrictions affecting the Rio Grande National Forest go to:

Fire Statistics:
Location:  14.5 miles north/northeast of Pagosa Springs, CO             
Start Date: 06/05/2013          
Complex Size:  109,615 acres                                                 Percent Contained: 66%
Windy Pass: 1,417 acres                                              Cause:  Lightning
            Papoose: 49,628 acres                                                   Total Personnel: 82
            West Fork: 58,570 acres                                                                                             
Resources Include:  1 Type-1 hand crews, 1 Type-2 hand crews, 5 engines, 6 water tenders, 2 Type-3 helicopters and 13 overhead personnel.

For more information:
Twitter:@RioGrandeUSFS  |

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