Colorado couple takes wedding photo in front of a wildfire

Colorado couple takes wedding photo in front of a wildfire

The largest and most threatening blaze, a 12-day-old conflagration dubbed the 416 Fire, has scorched more than 9,460 hectares of drought-parched grass, brush and timber at the edge of the San Juan National Forest near the southwestern Colorado town of Durango.

Police said the early investigation has ruled out natural causes for the blaze that ignited near a creek that is frequently used as a walkway in a largely blue-collar neighborhood.

"Weather is going to continue to play a role over the next few days, continuing to influence some of our decisions and the fire behavior", Jamie Knight, a 416 fire spokeswoman, told the Denver Post.

Hot and dry conditions are helping fuel fast-moving wildfires blazing throughout the West.

Albany County Officials have issued evacuation orders for the communities of Mountain Home, Wyocolo, Wold Tract, Foxpark, Gramm, Beehive, Miller Lake, and the areas along Highway 10 from Woods Landing south to the Colorado state line.

No one has been hurt and no structures have burned down, Graham said.

The closure order will prohibit entry into the San Juan National Forest, including entry by the general public, most administrative entry by Forest Service employees, and most uses authorized under Forest Service permits and contracts.

Gusting winds and stubborn hot, dry weather in southwestern Colorado helped stoke a largely uncontrolled wildfire that grew by almost a third to more than 22,000 acres (8,900 hectares) on Monday, with more than 2,000 homes under evacuation order. "We haven't received any information on that yet".

The evacuations have been lifted except for the area near one hot spot firefighters are continuing to battle.

Todd Pechota's Type 1 Incident Management Team is handling both fires.

UPDATE (3:40 p.m.) The fire is now estimated at 150 acres, according to InciWeb.

Residents of almost 860 homes were ordered to flee on Sunday, bringing to about 2,000 the number of dwellings placed under evacuation, said spokeswoman Megan Graham for La Plata County, Colorado. It has burned 100 acres in the Arapahoe and Roosevelt National Forest, officials said.

Crews continue an aggressive air and ground response on Wednesday to contain the fire and protect homes in the area.

A fire in California that burned nearly 200 acres has been contained, officials said.

Another 127 homes were ordered to evacuate, bringing the total to more than 2,100.

That means some of the trails in the Sandia foothills will be open in part and closed once hikers leave city property and enter the forest, he said. "To try to mitigate fire when it does occur", explained Ranger Bill Jackson, with the U.S. Forest Service.

"We don't anticipate there being a big push there in that northeastern corner", Knight said.

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