Decker Fire near Salida grows to more than 1,000 acres

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SALIDA, Colo. — The Decker Fire burning south of Salida has grown to 1,015 acres, according to officials.

In an update published Monday morning, officials said the fire grew Sunday due to clear skies, warm temperatures and low humidity.

The fire was started by lightning on Sept. 8. It is burning in the Rio Grande and Pike-San Isabel national forests roughly 9 miles south of Salida.

No evacuations or closures have been ordered.

Dead and down fuels are the main source of fire activity. The U.S. Forest Service estimates that within the fire area, about 80% of trees are dead from beetle-kill and blowdown.

“The Decker Fire is being managed to remove these high-risk fuels from the landscape for ecological benefit and to reduce the risk for catastrophic wildfire in the future,” officials said in an update posted to Facebook.

Crews worked on building contingency lines Sunday and continued to do so on Monday. The contingency lines provide a break in continuous fuel and are designed to provide firefighters with a better way to keep the fire within the wilderness if necessary.

Ninety-five people are assigned to the fire. A KMAX helicopter will be joining ground crews in firefighting efforts.

The fire is visible from U.S. 50 and U.S. 285. Authorities asked drivers to not stop in the roadway to observe the fire.

No injuries or lost structures have been reported.

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