Wildfire near Dolores is nearing 5,000 acres burned; no evacuations ordered

Spruce Creek Fire 2024_USFS
Posted at 12:33 PM, May 23, 2024

UPDATE | May 24, 8:15 a.m. — The Spruce Creek Fire is now 5,699 acres and 38% contained.


DOLORES, Colo. — A lightning-sparked wildfire is nearing 5,000 acres in southwest Colorado, about one week after it was first reported.

The Spruce Creek Fire started on May 14 in the Dolores Ranger District of the San Juan National Forest, about 11 miles northeast of Dolores, according to the U.S. Forest Service (USFS). As of Thursday morning, it had burned 4,962 acres. No evacuations have been ordered in connection with this fire.

Spruce Creek Fire map May 23 2024 morning
The Spruce Creek Fire broke out in May 2024 near Dolores.

The USFS said it is burning at low and moderate intensities within a network of Forest System Roads, which firefighters are using as firelines.

Two interagency hotshot crews, two wildland fire modules and several USFS and U.S. Bureau of Land Management engines and crews are working around the fire, the USFS said. In total, 179 personnel are involved.

On Wednesday, firefighters continued to secure the western and eastern indirect fire boundaries — Forest Roads 556 and 557 — with drip torches and drones. Weather conditions stayed favorable.

Spruce Creek Fire 2024

Fire managers are planning to use an aerial ignition team and ground crew on Thursday to secure indirect boundaries with roads and natural features. Residents and visitors in the area may notice smoke, which will likely settle in valleys and other low-lying areas at night and early in the morning, the USFS said.

The USFS has issued a closure for the Spruce Creek Fire area, including multiple National Forest Service roads.

Spruce Creek Fire 2024

In mid-April, Colorado leaders released the wildfire preparedness plan for 2024.

“The fire outlook for this year — current forecasts indicate that it will be normal fire potential expected across most of Colorado for the outlook period of April through July, except for southeast Colorado, some elevated conditions down there in the San Luis Valley,” said Colorado Division of Fire Prevention and Control Director Mike Morgan.

Watch more about this year's wildfire outlook below.

State releases fire outlook & preparedness plan today