Fire fighters worked diligently to contain the wildland fires from Thursday’s lightning storm in western Moffat County.  The Mad Creek Fire on the Routt National Forest is contained.  Dinosaur National Monument still has three wildland fires burning within the Monument boundaries. The Wild Fire is now 362 acres with no containment. The Hacking Fire is ten acres and uncontained. That and another fire are being managed for natural resource benefits.  Hold-over fires may materialize over the next few days. A hold-over is a delayed fire ignition from lightning when conditions are not conducive to immediately produce a fire but will smolder and remain hot until circumstances result in a fire.  Warm and dry weather will continue in northwest Colorado through the weekend and little or no rain is in the forecast.  No structures were destroyed and no injuries reported.  Fire danger is very high in Moffat and Rio Blanco Counties and high in Routt, Jackson, and Grand Counties.

Fire danger on the rise in Northwest Colorado

With warm temperatures and windy conditions across northwest Colorado vegetation is drying out rapidly and fire danger is on the upswing. Caution with any outdoor fire use is necessary as fire ignition in fine vegetative fuels such as grass and shrubs will spread quickly. Always check weather reports for current weather conditions before you strike a match to start an outdoor fire. Do not burn or use spark inducing equipment on windy days.

Fire Danger:
Rio Blanco and Moffat Counties is Very High.
Routt, Jackson and Grand Counties is High

Warnings and Advisories:
Red Flag Warning for low humidity, high winds and dry fuels are in effect today until 8 p.m. in Rio Blanco and Moffat Counties. A High Wind Advisory is in effect today until 8 p.m. in Routt, Jackson and Grand Counties. All outdoor burning should be curtailed in these counties until the Warning and Advisory have been lifted.

Your local, state and federal agencies and fire protection districts urge you to be fire safe and thank you for your diligence in contacting your local sheriff’s office to notify them of plans to burn outdoors.  Monitor all fires and have someone present until the fires are cold and no longer smoldering to reduce the opportunity for the fire or embers to re-kindle the flames.

Whittle the Wood Weekend in Craig

The annual “Whittle the Wood Rendezvous” kicks off tonight at Loudy Simpson Park in Craig.  Carvers have been creating their sculptures since Wednesday, and most will be nearly completed by the time live music starts tonight.  The concert, featuring  “Whitewater Ramble”, starts at 6 tonight.  Tomorrow morning starts with a 5K Fun Walk/Run sponsored by the Friends of Moffat County Education.  Registration begins at 7:15.  Food and craft vendors will be in the park all day tomorrow.  There’s a Quick Carve Competition at 1.  The live music starts at 3 with the Michael D. Band.  Winning carvers will be announced at 5, and Cracker will perform at 5:30.  The Bear River Young Life and Colorado Cruisers Car Show runs from 10 to 3 in downtown Craig, and there will be shuttles to and from Loudy Simpson Park throughout the day.  For more information follow this link.


Woodchoppers Jamboree and Rodeo In Encampment

The chips will fly this weekend during the 53rd annual “Woodchoppers Jamboree and Rodeo” in Encampment, Wyoming.  Loggers from all over the country will compete for the title of “Rocky Mountain Champion Lumberjack”.  Using power saws, axes and hand saws, competitors cut down trees, chop logs, and saw wood blocks in half, racing the clock for the fastest time.  The weekend begins tonight with a melodrama at 7.   Other activities include a rodeo, parade, barbecue and live music.  You’ll find a complete schedule for the Woodchoppers Jamboree here.


Steamboat Mustang Roundup Underway

The 25th annual Mustang Roundup got underway in Steamboat yesterday with a driving tour of the area.  The roundup continues today with an autocross at the Meadow’s Parking Lot and a welcome party and social for registered Ford Mustang owners.  Tomorrow over 400 cars are expected for the show-and-shine, which will be held from 10 to 3 on Lincoln Avenue.  For information and a full schedule of events click on this link.



A fishing clinic will be held in Hayden tonight.  Topics will include fishing regulations and safety, a lesson on what fish eat and how they find it, how to tell the difference between different species, and fishing techniques.  The clinic is open to everyone, but those 10 and under must have an adult with them.  You’re asked to bring your own rods, sunscreen and bug spray.  The clinic is part of a series being held throughout the summer in Hayden.  Organizers say there will be about 15 minutes of instruction, and the rest of the time will be spent fishing.  Tonight’s session starts at 6:30 at Dry Creek Park, and is expected to last about an hour.


55 Colorado counties have received over $31.6 million under the Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILT) program.  PILT provides federal payments to local governments to help offset losses in property taxes due to nontaxable federal land within their boundaries. Payments compensate these communities for their support and foregoing the tax revenues from these federal lands. The payments are used to help rural communities provide critical services, such as police, fire protection, emergency response, and public education.   The formula used to calculate payments is based on population, receipt sharing payments, and the amount of federal land within an affected county.  This year Moffat County will get $554,633; Rio Blanco County will receive $497,194; and Routt County gets $1,468,688.

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