wildfire update

Gunnison, Colorado, August 19, 2020 – 

Current Situation: The Mill Creek Fire is actively burning in grass and brush intermixed with aspen. There are currently 50 firefighters working in steep rugged terrain. The fire crossed the Mill Creek trail overnight due to spotting. Firefighters will continue to work to keep the fire in the Mill Creek drainage and hold containment lines.

Due to the fire’s location on National Forest System lands the following closure will be enacted immediately:

·         National Forest System Trail (NFST) #450 Mill Castle Trail, from the trailhead at the western terminus of NFSR #727,  westward approximately 7.6 miles to Storm Pass.  

This closure is being enacted in the interest of public health and safety. The public’s patience and understanding is greatly appreciated on this manner. For questions concerning this emergency closure please call the Gunnison Ranger District at 970-642-4425.

There are no structures threatened or values at risk at this time. Firefighter and public safety will remain the priorities on this incident; therefore, the public is asked to avoid the area to ongoing fire operations.

Fire Stats:

Cause: Unknown 

Location: 12 miles northwest of Gunnison, west of Cunningham Reservoir and National Forest Service Road (NFSR) #727

Size: Approximately 5 acres

Threatened Structures: 0

Vegetation: Grass, brush and aspen

Resources: Smokejumpers, 2 engine modules, Type I Helicopter

Total Personnel: 50

Fire Behavior: Creeping and smoldering with isolated tree torching

Alerts: Red Flag Warning in effect from 12 p.m. to 9 p.m. due to predicted dry thunderstorms and wind gusts up to 25 mph.

Closures: NFST #450 – Mill Castle Trail

Weather: Mostly sunny with isolated showers and scattered dry thunderstorms possible in the afternoon. Wind gusts up to 25 mph expected.

Public Health Info: Smokey conditions will persist in the area due to other fires across Colorado affecting overall air quality and smoke in the area. For a detailed daily air quality summary for the Gunnison River Basin Smoke Outlook please visit:         

https://wildlandfiresmoke.net/outlooks/GunnisonRiverBasin Wildfire fire smoke may affect your health. For more information see: https://www.colorado.gov/cdphe/wood-smoke-and-health 

Fire Information Links:

Grand Mesa, Uncompahgre and Gunnison National Forests Fire Information: 970-874-6602

West Slope Fire Information: www.WestSlopeFireInfo.com

GMUG Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/GMUG.NF/

GMUG Fire Info Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/GMUGFireInfo/

GMUG Twitter: https://twitter.com/GMUG_NF