Information from the Montrose Interagency Fire Management Unit Public Information Officer
The East Coal Creek Fire, located approximately 17 miles west of Gunnison, is burning in the West Elk Wilderness on National Forest System lands. This lightning-caused fire was reported on Friday (8/10) at 5:00 p.m. On Saturday, the East Coal Creek Fire showed minimal growth potential; however the fire has grown to an estimated 100 acres today due to changing weather conditions.
The East Coal Creek Fire is burning in an area dominated by Douglas fir and numerous beetle-killed trees. The fire is in extremely difficult terrain on a NW facing slope and is moving north and west – further into the West Elk Wilderness. The East Coal Creek fire is burning towards the 2008 West Elk Fire. There are no threats to life or property at this time. Smoke is visible along Hwy 50 west of Gunnison.
Keeping the public and firefighters safe is always our first concern. Our commitment to safety is reflected in every fire management activity. Due to the difficult terrain and concerns for firefighter safety, the East Coal Creek Fire is a full suppression wildfire with modified tactics. Fire managers have ordered additional resources to assist with the fire including one air attack, one Type 2 helicopter, and one Type 1 hand crew – which are expected to arrive tomorrow.
East Coal Creek Fire Stats:
Reported: August 10, 5:18 p.m.
Size: 100 acres
The Montrose Interagency Fire Management Unit covers the Grand Mesa, Uncompahgre, and Gunnison National Forest (USFS), the Gunnison Field Office (BLM), the Uncompahgre Field Office (BLM), Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park (NPS), Curecanti National Recreation Area (NPS), and public lands in the counties of Delta, Gunnison, Hinsdale, Montrose, Ouray, and San Miguel.