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Update: Lime Gulch fire at 600 acres, thirty structures could be in blaze's path

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Big photos, videos below.
Update: Yesterday, the Lime Gulch fire in southern Jefferson County seemed poised for enormous growth given its remote location and hot, dry weather that concerned firefighters.

Fortunately, the blaze's growth was rather modest. It only increased in size from 500 acres to 600 acres, with no homes damaged or injuries sustained. Yet plenty of dangers remain. The fire is still largely uncontained, conditions continue to be worrisome, and a slew of structures could be at risk if it really starts running.

The federal Inciweb.org page dedicated to the Lime Gulch fire estimates containment at just 5 percent, due in part to the area where it gained a foothold.

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Jefferson County Sheriff's Office
Authorities believe it sparked to life due to thunderstorms that rolled through the area in the Conifer vicinity on Tuesday night.

Fire crews from the U.S. Forest Service and other local agencies responded quickly and aggressively. But the hazardous terrain might it tough for firefighters to even reach the fire, let alone begin to subdue it.

That necessitated the implementation of aerial resources to supplement those on the ground.

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Jefferson County Sheriff's Office
Jefferson County Sheriff's Office spokeswoman Jacki Kelley at a press conference yesterday.
The plan calls for crews to start establishing containment lines around the fire, with the goal of keeping it south of the North Fork South Platte River and west of the South Platte River.

Meanwhile, the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office issued a mandatory evacuation notice for residents living within a three-mile radius of Cathedral Spires.

The Inciweb page calculates 410 land line phones were contacted in that zone, with another 859 land lines received calls in areas on pre-evacuation alert status -- a one-mile radius around the intersection of South Pleasant Park Road and Kuehster Road, as well as a one-mile radius of Spring Creek Ranch.

Here are the road closures in impacted Jefferson County areas, as well as Douglas County:

Intersection of HWY 285 and Foxton Road is only accessible to local residents

Intersection of Foxton Road and Running Deer is closed

Intersection of South Platte River and Southwest Platte River (“Two Forks”) is closed

Intersection of HWY 126 and Buffalo Creek is closed

Waterton Canyon is closed

Intersection of HWY 67 and South Platte River is only accessible to local residents
Nighthawk is closed

Also, access to the Colorado Trail off Highway 126 is closed at present.

The 283 personnel working Lime Gulch right now are doing their best to keep the conflagration from heading toward what 9News estimates at twenty to thirty structures that could be in the fire's path. Meanwhile, residents throughout the metro area who can see the fire's plume and smell the smoke it's spewing out will continue watching closely for any sign of gathering momentum.

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Jefferson County Sheriff's Office
Continue for more photos and video of the Lime Gulch fire, followed by our original coverage.


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7 comments
Bree Miller
Bree Miller

Xcel is going to love me because I'm asthmatic and have had to keep my windows closed and a/c blowing since last Monday :/

Bill Knox
Bill Knox

Yes! Woke up hacking & congested and it didn't hit me what the problem was til I saw this

Karen Trujillo
Karen Trujillo

Thanks for update...could smell it strong, all night, and in the am in central Englewood.

Marcus Rose
Marcus Rose

In Castle Rock, the smoke was unreal! It turned the Moon a light yellow. Had to sleep with the windows closed cause of how bad it was to breathe.

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

The evacuation zone covers much of Section 2 of the Colorado Trail.

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

@Marcus RoseIf we get a wind out of the southwest anytime soon it will get bad in the middle of Denver.  The air quality index is at "Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups", but there is no smoke here yet, and with a wind from the SE to S, it should remain clear for a while, but Denver may start to get some smoke by tonight.

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

-- and if the houses along it are removed, it will improve the Trail.

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