Friday Fire Update

Updated: 6:45 p.m.
-Sheep Herder Hill Fire is now 75% contained.
-Crews have now secured a fire line around the blaze and no containment has been lost.
-37 homes/cabins have been destroyed, 2 have been damaged and 23 outbuildings have been destroyed.
-100% containment is expected tomorrow, but fire officials that note that containment levels can change at any time.
-Residents that own property in the fire area will be allowed back onto Casper Mountain on Saturday by appointment only.
-Hat 6 road is open to residents only of that area.

Updated: 4:45 p.m.
-An estimated 15,493 acres have burned and the fire remains at 70% containment
-Fire officials have closed the Red Cross evacuation center at the Casper Armory on CY Avenue. However, they say the shelter is available to re-open if the need arises. To contact the Red Cross of Casper call 307-237-8436.

UPDATED: 9:40 a.m. 
-Sheep Herder Hill Fire remains 70% contained overnight; Elk Horn Fire is completely controlled, no smoke visible some or heat remains. 
-Sheep Herder Hill fire overnight resulted in burnt trees, showing fire officials how dry it is and they say the are, "not done with fighting the fire."
-Usually fire activity settles down overnight, but the fire remained relatively active. 
-Front face of Casper Mtn. remains on active evacuation alert. 
-NW corner of fire is the most active due to rough terrain and a high tree population. 
-Fire crews are strengthening the SW side of the fire to prepare for extreme fire conditions that they are expecting today. 
-Hot spots are expected, but it is a good thing so fire crews can see where the fire is burning still. 
-If you have questions about the fire, call 307-215-0099. 
-Destroyed home and cabin number remains at 35, 2 more are damaged.  20 outbuildings are destroyed but that number is expected to fluctuate as authorities are contacting property owners to see exactly what stood before the fire. 
Information provided by Andy Lyon, Fire Information Officer. 

by Liz Cooper, & Taylor Viydo, 
Updated: 10:40 p.m.
Crews continued to battle the Sheep Herder Hill Fire on Thursday. As of Thursday evening, an estimated 15,416 acres had burned and the blaze was 70% contained. Additionally, the nearby Elk Horn fire, which started Monday, was declared 100% controlled. That fire burned 8 acres on Casper Mountain.
Firefighters performed controlled burns in rough terrain on parts of Casper Mountain that were surrounded by several trees. Fire officials emphasized that the area was very difficult, but was vital since nearby containment lines were close to several homes. Weather conditions were favorable, though, with cooler temperatures, less wind, and some humidity. However, warmer weather is expected on Friday and officials say that may cause additional "hot spots."
330 personnel were assigned to the fire, down from 354 yesterday. So far, fire officials estimate the cost of fighting the Sheep Herder Hill fire to be close to $2 Million.
A total of 36 homes and cabins have been destroyed by the fire as well as 22 outbuildings. Two additional homes/cabins were damaged.  "The number of structures and the number of acres are going to fluctuate from time to time because of better mapping," said fire information officer Andy Lyon. "[The fire] has not grown much in the last few days - that's the good news. The folks from Natrona County Emergency Management are working diligently to identify and notify home owners and property owners involved."
Officials say it could still be at least a few days before residents are allowed back to Casper Mountain. Charred trees with potential of falling remain a concern, and officials want to make sure the area is safe before letting residents return to their homes.