December 12, 2017
CUSTER STATE PARK – The Legion Lake Fire is in its second day and burned 500 acres overnight, bringing the total up to an estimated 3,000 plus acres with containment remaining at zero percent. The fire is officially been labeled a type two and Rocky Mountain Team Blue is in command. Custer State Park remains closed.
Structure protection has been successful with one out building still being the only loss in the fire. The main areas of protection remain to be Blue Bell Lodge area, State Game Lodge, the park headquarters, Star Academy East and Legion Lake Lodge area.
Main objectives for Tuesday include continual structure protection, scouting for potential fire lines, active mapping, including aerial recon to gain a better estimate of acreage burned, prep for potential preventative burn outs in the area of Mount Coolidge Fire Tower on Highway 87, minimize impact to identified structures, wildlife and travel corridors, and to keep the fire south of 16A, west of Wildlife Loop Road, north of Ridge Road and Lame Johnny and east of Highway 87.
Winds have calmed since Monday and will be at five to 15 miles per hour coming out of the north and northwest with the temperatures reaching into the 60’s for Tuesday. Conditions are very serious with all fire fuel extraordinarily dry for this time of year. High winds are expected to pick up again in the evening and remain strong into Wednesday and Thursday.
Wildlife is currently not a risk as all species in the park are used to wildfire and are naturally avoiding dangerous areas. The opening of Highway 16A for public use will continue to be evaluated dependent upon firefighter and public safety