- Share article toAlthough it was too cloudy for aircraft to fly with the limited visibility, firefighters were able to continue to make progress on several areas of the fire. In the upper portion of The Retreat and Storm Mountain, firefighters continue mitigation work to secure structures as the fire continues backing down. Fire officials are scouting for opportunities to create a fireline from The Retreat to Storm Mountain to protect values at risk. Firefighters continued strengthening the fireline along 44H/ Buckhorn Road to prevent the fire from advancing to the north/northeast. In addition, crews continued constructing line around the spotfire to the east near Buckskin Heights.
- Share article toMessage from the Larimer County Sheriff Justin Smith: A home is more than a structure. It represents family, achievements and oftentimes a lifetime of memories. Watching homes get burned up in the fire today was absolutely heartbreaking. I wish we could tell every home or property owner immediately if there homes were damaged or destroyed in today’s tremendous fire run. However, given the amount of area burned, the terrain that the burn was in and the active fire that remains in many areas along the Buckhorn- it’s likely to be a few or several days before we have all those answers. When we escort Damage Assessment Teams in, it’s an involved process. First, determining addresses of properties can be very difficult in remote, mountainous areas. Second, it takes time to document the structures not affected as well as those damaged, but not destroyed. Lastly, it’s not always easy to differentiate between cabins, houses, sheds and outbuildings in many places. The teams compare the damage against county property records, which can get involved. On top of that, we find many unrecorded structures on mountain properties- which gets even more complicated. I can personally attest that many of the areas affected today are quite precarious and travel in those areas is slow and requires many precautions. We will do everything in our powers to get the damage assessments completed, but we will not unnecessarily risk life or limb to complete them. The overwhelming majority of owners understand that. In the coming days, we will provide lists of homes damaged or destroyed. Every one of those losses bothers us. However, having been deep in the fire last night and through the day, I can attest that fire crews saved a tremendous number of homes and I am eternally appreciative and grateful for that! Having lived in the mountains of Larimer County twice in my life, I appreciate just how dangerous mountain living can be. Both times, I understood that wildfire was a real danger and I understood that living there meant wildfire could take my home and my belongings. Thankfully, it never did.. However, even given. Those risks, I always found the benefits of mountain living to more than justify the risk. While I am sad for the loss of homes today, it could have been much worse and I am grateful that no one was seriously injured or killed in this fire today. I offer prayers of thanksgiving for that protection today!
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