Published June 4 ,2022

Bear Dance Fire grows to 89 acres

By Crystal Ashike

Scar burn from the Bear Dance Fire, photo caputred on Saturday, June 4, 2022 in Ignacio, Colorado. KSUT Tribal Radio | Crystal Ashike

Ignacio, Colo. — A fire currently under investigation started on the Southern Ute Indian Tribal land is 0 percent contained.

The fire developed near Bear Dance Road in Ignacio, Colo., at 12:23 p.m. on Wednesday, June 3. It moved north along the Pine River, growing to 89 acres by Saturday, June 4.

The Bureau of Indian Affairs, Southern Ute Fire Management Office, U.S. Forest Service, and Los Pinos Fire Protection District are working to combat the fire.

Ground resources include six firefighting crews, four modules, five engines, and one dozer. All managed by Southern Ute Durango Intergnacey Type 3 Team.

Meanwhile, Fire crews are digging a fire line around the fire's perimeter, and no injuries were reported or structures lost.

Arial support is available and ordered when needed. In addition, there are no temporary flight restrictions related to the Bear Dance Fire.

At this time, drones are prohibited, and pre-evacuations orders are no longer in effect. Still, road closures remain for the Park Road between CR-517 and Bear Dance Road. Also, the Sun Ute Multi-Purpose Park is closed.

Although the sky seems clear from smoke as of Saturday evening, the Southern Ute Indian Tribe issued a smoke advisory that may lead to poor air quality and may be checked at the Southern Ute Indian Tribe's Air Quality Ambient Monitor. The reservation remains under Stage 1 Fire Restrictions according to a press release by the Durango Interagency Type 3 Incident Management Team.

For information and updates follow the Southern Ute Indian Tribe Facebook page.

Update: Bear Dance Fire - 40 percent contained at 18:00 MST, Saturday, June 4.

Monday, June 6 - The Bear Dance Fire remains at 89 acres and 82% contained. There have been no structures lost and no injuries. Weather continues to create possible fire hazards. Wind is expected to be 10-15 mph with gusts up to 24 mph.

Tuesday, June 7 - Bear Dance Fire 100 percent contained.

Bear Dance Fire is extinguished. The fire is now 100% contained and burned a total of 89 acres.

Fire crews will remain in the area to work on the phased reopening of the popular recreational areas. At this time the area will remain closed. As the area is deemed safe for use, announcements will be posted to the tribal website and social media. Please stay away from the area while crews continue working on the reopening.

There were no structures lost and crews were safe from injury.

Individuals can use the walking trail from behind SunUte down to the Multi-Purpose Field, south towards BIA. Crews have set up a safety perimeter using cones. Please stay on the outside of the cones. Ute Park Road from CR 517 to Bear Dance Road remains closed.

This will be the final Bear Dance Fire update. Additional updates on recreational area reopening will be forthcoming, according to press release from Lindsay Box, communication specialist Southern Ute Indian Tribe