Crews Fight Fire in Medicine Bow National Forest
Firefighters from several agencies are battling a 76-acre blaze in the Medicine Bow National Forest, a spokesman said.
"We had a new start yesterday on the extreme northern end of the Medicine Bow National Forest in the Laramie Peak area about a mile away from Curtis Gulch Campground," Aaron Voos said Friday.
"It's in La Bonte Canyon, aptly named the La Bonte Canyon Fire," Voos said. The canyon is in northeast Albany County.
The Black Mountain fire lookout reported the fire Thursday afternoon. Winds last night pushed the fire to its current size. It stayed that size through Friday morning, he said.
The Forest Service evacuated about 30 campers at the Curtis Gulch Campground and closed campground and nearby trail heads, Voos said. The campground and trails are popular with people in Glenrock, Douglas and Casper, he added.
No one is reported missing, Voos said.
The cause of the fire is unknown. There have been lightning strikes in the area, but no strikes have been directly linked to the La Bonte Canyon Fire, he said. "We're not going to rule out the possibility that it could be human-caused."
Lightning caused the now-contained 21.5-acre Little Beaver, he said.
The Forest Service, a division of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, moved the crews working that fire to the La Bonte Canyon, Voos said. Personnel working the fire are from the Forest Service, Albany County, two single-engine tankers and one helicopter, he said.
The fire dangers will grow in many areas of the state now that the forests and grasslands -- the fuels -- are drying after late spring and early summer precipitation. The dry fuels combine with high winds and lightning to increase the danger.
Earlier this week, the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, a division of the U.S. Department of the Interior, imposed fire restrictions on its lands in Natrona, Converse, Platte and Goshen counties.
Likewise, Natrona County also imposed its own fire restrictions.