(LARAMIE, Wyo.) July 8, 2014 – The Owen Fire, which was discovered Monday afternoon about 30 miles southwest of Laramie on the Medicine Bow National Forest, has now burned an estimated 500 acres. The fire is burning primarily in large beetle-killed timber north of Lake Owen and remains on the National Forest. There is no estimated containment at this time.
Only Forest Roads 517 and 540 immediately adjacent to the fire perimeter have been closed at this time; however, fire officials are discouraging the public from entering the area.
“We are discouraging public entry into areas adjacent to the fire area for public and firefighter safety,” said Laramie District Ranger Frank Romero. “Multiple active air and ground operations are being conducted and we appreciate the public being patient while we safely manage this fire.”
Residents in the communities of Woods Landing, Jelm, Fox Park, and Albany, as well as those along Fox Creek Road have been advised by the Sheriff’s Department to shelter in place until given further notice.
A local Type III Incident Management Team assumed command of the fire as of 6:00 a.m. Tuesday. Around 120 personnel are currently assigned to the fire, including several engines, hand crews, dozers, as well as multiple air resources. Current fire management actions include an assortment of air and ground operations.
While higher humidity and lower temperatures overnight and early this morning gave firefighters a favorable break, weather forecasts in the area are calling for warm conditions in the low 70s on Tuesday with spotty thunderstorms possible.
Firefighter and public safety will remain a high priority throughout the incident.
The cause of the fire remains unknown and is under investigation.