UPDATE: Fires Near NM Border 90 Percent Contained

By: KKTV News Email
By: KKTV News Email
The Bear Fire along the Colorado-New Mexico border has held at approximately 6,885 acres and is now 90 percent contained at last report Friday morning.  The other fire in the area, the Purgatoire Fire, is also 90 percent contained.

Photo From Michelle Goodall

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Firefighters are getting closer to fully containing two fires near the Colorado-New Mexico border, which have burned more than 12,000 acres over the last week. Neither fire has increased in size over the last two days.

The Bear Fire along the state line has held at approximately 6,885 acres and is now 90 percent contained at last report Saturday morning. It's burning on the Horseshoe and Barela Mesa, about 25 miles southeast of Trinidad. The fire began in New Mexico late last week, but quickly spread into Colorado due to strong winds. Three hundred and twenty-four acres have burned in New Mexico, while 6,561 have burned in Colorado.

Evacuations have still not been ordered, but remain a possibility.

High winds Thursday initially concerned crews, but cloud coverage and lower temperatures allowed firefighters to keep both fires from growing. Friday remained windy and dry, but crews were able to make significant progress on containment.

The Colorado Springs Fire Department has sent four firefighters to assist with structure protection of large ranch homesteads. The crew is expected to remain at the fire until June 5 unless there is a need for them to stay longer.

A second fire in the area has burned 6,140 acres in the Purgatorie River Canyon to the northeast of the Bear Fire. It's now 90 percent contained.

Firefighters say there are restrictions in place on Grey Creek Road near the fire, and only residents are being allowed through.

Two hundred personnel from both Colorado and New Mexico remain at both fires. At one point, there were 400 people assigned to both fires.

The Pueblo County Sheriff's Office wants to remind people that there are no active fires in Pueblo County right now. The dispatch center is getting many 911 calls about the smoke. They are asking you to call 911 only if you see flames or have an emergency.

11 News is monitoring the developing situation with the Bear Fire. We will bring you updates from crews on the scene as they become available.

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