Update: High Park Fire, Colorado: 54,230 acres burned, $9.1 million cost to date, 20% contained

The High Park Fire… has burned 54,230 acres to date and is estimated 20 percent contained. Additional firefighters have arrived with more than 1,533 personnel working on the fire with a 24-hour schedule with night shifts and day shifts. Steep terrain, limited access, and the presence of dense stands of beetle killed trees to the west of the fire area are of concern to fire officials. via: InciWeb:

  • Significant: Aggressive backing and flanking fire in all fuel types exposed to solar radiation. Fire behavior moderated due to late morning, early afternoon thunderstorm development. Single tree torching observed on the north end of the fire. Fire continues to push west into heavy beetle killed fuels. [...] Colorado Army National Guard and Colorado Air National Guard assisting with road closures and also providing fireline personnel, heavy engines and equipment; Damage assessment teams are validating and identifying damaged and destroyed structures; A significant number of structures were lost during the first 48 hours of the incident. The number of structures confirmed lost will be continually updated as they are assessed and verified; and the approximate ownership as of 6/15/2012 at 1600 is 69% state/private and 31% USFS.
  • You can listen to some of the EMS, Fire, and LE personnel who are involved HERE.

Boulder Daily Camera: The number of homes destroyed in the giant High Park Fire west of Fort Collins jumped to 112 on Friday… [and] has cost an estimated $9.1 million to fight.

Denver Post: Firefighters plan today to deploy an apparatus rarely used on wildfires to battle the 54,000 acre High Park fire, hoping to more rapidly build a defensible fire line on the north and west flanks. It’s called a feller buncher. “It’s a very large piece of equipment,” said Reghan Cloudman, spokeswoman for the fire. “You can cut a lot of trees quickly.” [...] With more than 54,230 acres burned, the High Park fire is the third-largest in recorded Colorado history. Only the Hayman fire at 137,760 acres and Missionary Ridge, at 71,739 acres were larger, and those fires happened during the drought of 2002.

Fire explodes on the south side of Poudre Canyon as the High Park wildfire burns west of Fort Collins, Colo. on June 14. (ED ANDRIESKI / AP)

Tony Rayl / The Yuma Pioneer / AP
A wildfire sends up a huge wall of smoke, forcing authorities to temporarily close a section of U.S. Highway 34 east of Yuma County, Colo. (TONY RAYL / THE YUMA PIONEER / AP)

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