Just when the Colorado fires gain some containment, erratic winds blasted Grand County and wildfires scorched the idyllic mountain region.
The aptly-named East Troublesome Fire in Grand County exploded yesterday and grew from 19,000 acres to 125,000. It forced immediate evacuations for the residents of Grand Lake last night. Volunteers knocked on the doors of Airbnbs since tenants wouldn’t get the reverse 911. Can you imagine? Scary. Five people are missing.
This photo was taken at 4:30 on October 21 from Niwot in Boulder County. The wisp of white smoke is from the CalWood Fire behind the foothills.
That one is 26% contained. You can check out some of the dramatic photos here. I could only see a small fire in the foothills two nights ago. Smoke and haze obstructed my view last night. We are out of danger here in Niwot — fingers crossed.
Notice how the massive fire is tucked behind the foothills to the left?
Then, yesterday afternoon, towering brown clouds billowed overhead. Thinking a massive thunderstorm was moving in from the north and mixing with smoke from the fires, I was somewhat relieved. It was NOT a thunderstorm. The skies were clear. Heavy brown smoke rose from the East Troublesome Fire.
I took this photo at 6:30 PM.
The clouds, thick with smoke, obliterated the sky.
The CalWood Fire continues to grow to the north. They evacuated a neighborhood near Lyons last night. When will it end???
The good news:
Fog has settled into the Front Range along with much cooler temperatures. This might be the first time I am excited about the freezing rain predicted later this evening.
Massive towers of smoke rise above the front range in Boulder County October 21.
A huge snowstorm is moving into the region on Saturday night and will continue through Monday. Fingers crossed for a foot of snow, at least. YES!
We are leaning toward the end of October. The days are getting shorter. Winter will bring moisture. The fires will end. It will take time for our forests to recuperate, but they will, eventually. So far, 550,000 acres have burned in Colorado this year. I did the math.
I pray for all of the people and animals displaced by the fires. If you live in the area, be aware of all kinds of potential encounters with wildlife. My friend Karin saw a bear in Boulder last week. Our bobcat is back, but I would love to see a bear!
A video from last night posted on Instagram. You’ll get a sense of the blanket of thick smoke above the front range:
9:00 PM October 22 – Because the Cameron Peak Fire is growing and may converge with the East Troublesome Fire, they are pulling firefighters off the CalWood Fire in the foothills near Niwot, Boulder, and Lyons. I pray the weather stays cool and quiet. So scary!
They are evacuating parts of Estes Park too. Colorado is on fire!
10:00 AM October 24 – The CalWood Fire is 66% contained and the cooler weather should help today. The Lefthand Canyon Fire is fully contained. Yay!
Here’s a link to an interactive map of the wildfires in Colorado.
To donate to the families, who lost their homes in the CalWood and Lefthand Canyon Fires, here is the link to the 2020 Fires Relief Fund for Boulder County.
To donate to the families, who lost homes in the East Troublesome Fire click to the Grand County Wildfire Emergency Fund.
Have you encountered any wildlife lately? Are there any fires in your part of the world? Have you been affected by smoke?