West Fork Complex Fire Update: July 18

Special Message: This is anticipated to be the last update for the complex from an incident management team.  As of 6 p.m., the management will be turned over to a smaller Type IV team.  The phone number and email address for this incident will be disabled the morning of Sunday, July 21.  Any further questions should be directed to the Rio Grande National Forest or the San Juan National Forest.

Current Situation

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

Widespread shower and thunderstorm activity will remain across the mountain region over the next several days.  The main threats will be lightening along with strong wind gusts and heavy rain that could cause local heavy rain that could result in localized flash flooding on area burn scars.  Humidity levels will be 28-38 percent.

Papoose Fire
Scattered interior heats on the fire will continue to be monitored.  To mitigate for public safety, crews will be working to fell dead and damaged trees.  The backhaul and rehabilitation of
equipment will continue off of the fire line.

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
http://www.colorado.gov/airquality/colo_advisory.aspx or http://www.colorado.gov/airquality/wildfire.aspx 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:  http://www.fs.usda.gov/alerts/sanjuan/alerts-notices.

For information on road and trail closures and fire restrictions affecting the Rio Grande National Forest go to:  http://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/riogrande/.

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        
Papoose: 49,628 acres       
Cause:  Lightning       
Total Total Personnel: 71
West Fork: 58,570 acres                                                 
Resources Include:  1 Type-1 hand crews, 1 Type-2 hand crews, 2 engines, 2 Type-3 helicopters and 12 overhead personnel.

For more information
Blog:  http://westforkfirecomplex.blogspot.com/  | Website:
Twitter: @RioGrandeUSFS  | Photos:

Information provided by the West Fork Complex Fire Information Officer.