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Wyoming Authorities Investigate Cause of Snake Fire, Broadway Fire Grows by 500 Acres

Beaver Creek Fire Management
Beaver Creek Fire Management

The U.S. Forest Service is trying to figure out exactly how the Snake Fire started Saturday afternoon.

“Sometimes, it’s very, very evident,” says Forest Service spokesman Aaron Voos. But that’s not the case this time.

First reported at 30 acres in size around 4 p.m. Saturday, the fire spread rapidly and was estimated at 2,659 acres as of 5 p.m. Monday. Hunters and Campers were evacuated from the area, which is now officially closed.

The Snake Fire started about five miles southeast of Battle Creek Campground in the Roaring Fork of the Little Snake River drainage. It is mostly burning on the Medicine Bow National Forest, but multiple pieces of private land and one parcel of state land are nearby.

Fire managers say the blaze threatens some ranch structures.

Voos says the cause of the fire isn’t necessarily suspicious, but the agency is hoping someone who may have been in the area Saturday afternoon will come forward with a tip that could prove helpful.

“They’re trying to gather as much information as possible,” Voos says.

Anyone with information on activity in the area where the fire started just east of Forest Road 851.1F Saturday afternoon can call U.S. Forest Service Law Enforcement Officer Hannah Nadeau at 307-343-2335.

A total of 124 firefighters — including six engines, four helicopters and a bulldozer — are fighting the Snake Fire, which is burning toward the Huston Park Wilderness two miles north of the Wyoming/Colorado state line.

Not too far to the east, the Broadway Fire grew by 500 acres Monday and is now estimated at 2,107 acres in size. The fire, started by lightning on Aug. 14, is 7 percent contained.

The Beaver Creek Fire, now at 38,267 acres in size, is 72 percent contained. The cause remains under investigation as 168 firefighters and three helicopters work toward full suppression.

Fire managers say while cooler temperatures, higher humidity and lower wind speeds will moderate fire activity over the next few days, fuels remain dangerously dry. Fire activity could very well resume with the return of dry conditions.

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