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West Fork Complex

Unit Information

San Juan National Forest
U.S. Forest Service
Durango, CO 81301

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This incident is no longer being updated.

Map Illustrating The West Fork Complex Fire Perimeter As Of July 13, 2013 - Final MapImage options: [ Full Size ]

The West Fork Complex consists of three lightning-caused wildfires, West Fork, Windy Pass, and Papoose, which have been burning on the San Juan and Rio Grande National Forests and private lands in southern Colorado. Fire activity has been minimal in recent days and rain and higher humidity have dampened fire activity considerably although areas near and in the Weminuche Wilderness have continued to smolder and produce smoke. Fire fighters are now recovering equipment and rehabilitating land which was disturbed by fire fighting and structure protection efforts over the past three weeks.

The West Fork Complex is being managed by the Great Basin Type 1 Incident Management Team (IMT) under Incident Commander Beth Lund. The Incident Command Post (ICP) is located at Del Norte High School.

Current Messages:

-Safety to the public and to firefighters is always the number one priority on any wildland fire.

-Both the Rio Grande and the San Juan National Forests have issued an area closure order. Maps of the closure orders are located under the “Closures” tab at the top of the page.

-Highways 149 and 160 are open to traffic. Please drive carefully and watch for fire traffic.

-Due to the high demand for information about the West Fork Complex, a blog has been created to facilitate current information. Visit the blog at

For the most current fire information updates please see the Recent Articles on the right side of this page.

Basic Information

Current as of
Incident TypeWildfire
Date of OriginWednesday June 05th, 2013 approx. 01:00 PM
Location14.5 miles NE of Pagosa Springs
Incident CommanderDavid Carr
Coordinates37.461 latitude, -106.944 longitude

Current Situation

Total Personnel43
Size109,615 Acres
Percent of Perimeter Contained100%
Fuels Involved

Timber (litter and understory). Bug kill spruce/fir w/heavy dead and down.

Significant Events

Scattered precipitation and thunderstorms across the fire area. Point protection objectives have been met on the Windy Pass and West Fork West Zone. Back haul of suppression equipment will be completed today. An area closure on the Rio Grande National Forest and the Weminuche Wilderness remains in effect. The fire continues to be managed using a combination of monitoring and confinement as identified in the WFDDS Management Action Points. Recent precipitation and higher relative humidities have contributed to firefighter success in meeting management objectives.


Planned Actions

Ensure the risk analysis process continues to be used to mitigate risk and provide for the flexibility to apply the right resource to the right task at the right time. Continue securing fire perimeter to protect values at risk. Continue suppression repair and back haul of suppression equipment.

Projected Incident Activity



No threat from the fire remains relative to structures. Sixty-six percent(66%)of the perimeter is felt to be secure at this time.

West Fork-East Zone 39, 238 total acres

Papoose: (33 acres private; West Fork-West Zone 19,332 total acres; Windy Pass-1417 total acres (619 acres private).