Colorado Spring Wildfire Map: Blaze Spreads to 14,000 Acres, Evacuations Underway

UPDATE: 12:28 p.m. ET—A Friday morning update from the Rocky Mountain Incident Management Team said the Spring Fire in Colorado had expanded to 23,889 acres and confirmed that structures had been lost, though the exact number was unknown. Red flag conditions were in the forecast with warm temperatures, low humidity and wind gusts up to 35 miles per hour expected in the area, according to the update. Additionally, there was no time estimate for when the portion of Highway 160 that was closed overnight would reopen.

Original story:

A fire that broke out in Colorado on Wednesday rapidly expanded in size Thursday evening into Friday. The Spring Fire, in the southern part of the state, was one of several burning Friday. Others included the 416 fire and the Sugarloaf fire.

The fire reached more than 14,000 acres of burn Friday, and evacuations were underway for those in the immediate and at-risk areas. Homes in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains had been already evacuated by Friday. Pre-evacuations were ordered for La Veta and Cuchara, KWGN reported. There was zero percent containment as of Friday morning, and the fire was spreading, according to the Colorado Division of Fire Prevention and Control.

Weather predictions for the area of nearby La Veta called for temperatures in the 90s Friday and in the high 80s for the following days. The hot, dry conditions could make it easier for fires to spread.

The threat of fire was prompting authorities to close down roadways and evacuate neighborhoods out of precaution. The Colorado Emergency Management Twitter account was sharing some news about closings, as was the San Luis Valley Emergency website. US-160 was closed in both directions because of the fire between Fort Garland and Walsenburg, the Colorado Department of Transportation tweeted. It was unclear when it might reopen.

Road closures were causing delays in mail delivery as well. "We have 230 deliveries we could not make yesterday, and that mail is being held at the post office," a spokesperson for the USPS in Colorado told Newsweek. The amount of mail being held at the post office could increase. "To collect the mail we ask that [people] bring their ID," said the spokesperson referring to residents who want to retrieve the mail that couldn't be delivered.

As of Thursday, before the fire rapidly expanded, some structures had already been lost, according to San Luis Valley Emergency. There were two shelters set up for those who evacuated and needed a place to stay. One was located in Walsenburg, and the other was in Fort Garland, the map from the Colorado Division of Fire Prevention and Control showed.

While some neighborhoods near the fires haven't been evacuated yet, officials are warning residents to be ready to flee in short notice if necessary, KOAA reported.

spring fire map june 29
This map from the Colorado Division of Fire Prevention and Control shows where the Spring Fire was burning in south Colorado. Colorado Division of Fire Prevention and Control