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Release Date: 10/04/12
Contacts: David Boyd, Public Information Officer, 970 319-4130    

Highway 13 Fire burns 500 acres north of Rifle (10-04-12)

RIFLE, Colo. – Approximately 75 firefighters endured rugged terrain and very active fire behavior this afternoon and evening as they worked the Highway 13 Fire about 15 miles north of Rifle, Colo.

A heavy helicopter, two single-engine air tankers and an air attack plane supported the firefighters from the air. Additional resources are ordered and expected to arrive tomorrow.

The cause of the fire is under investigation. It was reported about 1:30 p.m. and actively grew to an estimated 500 acres, fanned by the strong west wind. The resulting smoke column was visible throughout the area. The fire is burning in piñon-juniper and mixed conifer forests on the west side of the Grand Hogback.

Highway 13 was closed for several hours this afternoon due to the fire activity, but it has reopened. Although structures are in the area, there is not an immediate threat at this time and no evacuations have been ordered. 

“This fire clearly shows that we are still facing a high fire danger this fall,” said Colorado River Fire Rescue Chief Mike Moran. “We are urging the public to continue to be mindful of the risk and to continue to be extremely careful with fire.”

Colorado River Fire Rescue, the Upper Colorado River Interagency Fire Unit, Meeker Fire and Rescue, Grand Valley Fire Protection District and the Juniper Valley Crew all worked the fire today. Colorado State Patrol, Garfield County Sheriff’s Office and the Colorado Department of Transportation all provided critical support to the firefighting effort.

Updated information will be available at or by calling 970 456-3623.

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land, the most of any Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM's mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. In Fiscal Year 2015, the BLM generated $4.1 billion in receipts from activities occurring on public lands.

  2815 H Road      Grand Junction, CO 81506  

Last updated: 10-04-2012