PLATTE COUNTY — The Britania Mountain Fire near Wheatland spread to 24,105 acres as of late Wednesday afternoon, prompting further evacuations in the Palmer Canyon area.
The fire was active primarily on the southern and southeastern flanks of the mountain Rocky Mountain Team Black assumed command of the fire at 6 a.m. today.
Yesterday, firefighters continued line construction on the north flank of the fire.
Crews also worked to prevent the fire’s eastward spread by constructing direct line, or fire line on the fire’s active edge, in the lighter fuels at lower elevations.
On the southeastern edge of the fire, crews assessed options to construct indirect fire line, or fire line constructed away from the active fire edge.
On the south flank of the fire, crews worked along the Palmer Canyon Road to keep the fire north of the road as well as protect homes and other values at risk in that area.
Aviation resources were used to assist firefighters working on the ground with both single engine air tankers and water drops from helicopters to slow the forward spread of the fire as well as help firefighters hold roads being used as fire lines.
On the western flank of the fire, hand crews continued working in steep terrain seeking options to construct indirect fire line to the northwest of the fire.
Today, firefighters will continue constructing line and monitoring established control line on the north side of the fire.
On the eastern edge of the fire, crews will mop up and monitor containment line constructed over the past days.
Crews will continue to seek options to construct indirect line and may conduct firing operations along Palmer Canyon Road to secure the southeastern edge of the fire.
On the southern flank of the fire, firefighters will continue working to keep the fire north of Palmer Canyon Road and protect homes and other values at risk in this area.
Engine crews will be implementing on structure protection in and around residences along Palmer Canyon Road; air resources will continue to support ground resources in this area.
Weather & Fuel Conditions: Thursday’s weather will be similar to Wednesday’s, with a Red Flag Warning in effect due to low relative humidity and gusty winds.
Temperatures are expected to be 1-2 degrees higher than Wednesday with highs in the low to mid 80s and relative humidity in the single digits on the fire.
Winds are expected to be out of the west-southwest from 14 to 20 mph with gusts up to 28 mph with an isolated chance for thunderstorms in the area, which could bring erratic outflow winds.
Evacuations and Closures: Mandatory evacuations are in effect for residences north of Palmer Canyon Road in Platte County west of the Laramie River to the Albany County line.
Evacuations are also in place for Albany County residents from the Platte County line
to Cottonwood Road.
Palmer Canyon Road remains closed to through traffic in both counties from Sybille Creek Road in Platte County to Cottonwood Road in Albany County.
The evacuations in the Laramie Peak subdivision were lifted on Tuesday; residents will continue to use Fish Creek road to access the area.
The area remains on pre-evacuation status and residents should be prepared to evacuate with a thirty-minute notice.
Fletcher Park Road is closed from west of the Laramie River to north of Van Ortwick Hill Road. To sign up for emergency alerts, residents of Platte County can visit https://bit.ly/2Lyewed; Albany County residents can visit https://bit.ly/2wx8wwO to sign up.
Evacuees and property owners affected by the fire in Albany County should email email@example.com with contact information including name, address, email, and phone number.
This will be used for sharing information from Albany County Emergency
Management. Fire Restrictions:
Fire restrictions are in effect in Platte County. Details on those restrictions can be found at https://bit.ly/2wu4Psl or call (307) 331-8521. There are no fire restrictions in effect for Albany County.
Temporary Flight Restrictions: The Temporary Flight Restriction (TFR) for the Britania Mountain Fire remains in effect around the entire fire area, including restrictions on unmanned aircraft systems (drones).
This TFR is expanding to incorporate the recent fire growth to the south.