Wildfire Information

To report a Wildfire call 9-1-1

Try to provide the following information if it is available: location (as specific as possible), smoke color, smoke direction, size of fire area (if possible), flame height (if possible)


Fire Danger in Gunnison County

Current Fires

Russell Fire Update; 08/12/18, 9:00 am

Authority: Gunnison County Sheriff Rick Besecker

On 08/11/18, at approximately 3:30 pm, Sheriff Officers and Fire responded to a reported blaze roughly 30 mile west of Gunnison and two miles south of US Highway 50.  Approximately 40 fire fighters combined from the Gunnison Fire District, Ohio City Fire Department and the Montrose Fire Department responded along with Gunnison County Sheriff’s Officers and Federal entities. 

Air support was immediately ordered.  A fixed wing air tanker was able to make three sorties and delivered effective retardants on the perimeter.  A helicopter made countless runs and delivered water at strategic locations within the fire.  

It has been estimated that the fire has consumed approximately 250 acres of private land without structures or other points of value being affected.  The fire was monitored overnight and with slight exception did not grow in size.  The conflagration was considered self-contain over the evening and ground crews as well as anticipated air support will continue to fight the fire today.    

Although the fire has responded well to the initial attack it is still considered non-contained.

For more information and updates, please visit our Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/GunnisonCountyCO/.

Fire Restrictions

On July 31, 2018 at 4:15pm, the Gunnison County Board of County Commissioners adopted Resolution 2018-26: A Resolution Implementing Stage 2 Fire Restrictions. Stage two fire restrictions are in effect for the northern portion of Gunnison County. For more information, please reference the below map & resolution, or contact the Gunnison County Sheriff’s Office at 970-641-1113.

As of July 27, 2018 at noon, all fire restrictions for unincorporated areas of Gunnison County and the Towns of Crested Butte, Mt. Crested Butte and Pitkin were lifted.

Other Local Fire Restriction Information:

Residents and visitors are encouraged to continue to exercise extreme caution.

Current Fire Restriction information for Gunnison County is also available via recorded message at 970-642-4686. 

General Fire Reminders:

  • Gunnison County Burn Ordinance requires persons igniting controlled burns or open fires (excludes recreational campfires) in unincorporated parts of the county to contact the Gunnison Communications Center at 970-641-8000 before beginning. 
  • Open fires are not permitted in the town or city limits of Crested Butte and Gunnison. 
  • In Mt. Crested Butte open fires are only permitted in puts, barrels, or similar containers.
  • Clear flammable material away from campfires.
  • Before lighting a fire check the current fire restriction information.
  • Put out your campfire with water before you leave and make sure the ashes are cool to the touch.
  • Never leave a campfire unattended for any reason.
  • Contain campfires within existing fire rings or rock structures.
  • YOUR campfire is YOUR responsibility.
  • Fireworks are not allowed on any federal lands.
  • Review the Gunnison County Burn Ordinance (PDF).
  • View the videos for understanding the Fire Restriction Stages.

Fire Restriction & Wildfire Information Websites:

Red Flag Warning

A Red Flag Warning means no open burning. Please refer to Ordinance #16: An Ordinance Authorizing the Identification of "Red Flag" Fire Days. 

For information on Red Flag Warnings check the National Weather Service forecast page for the Gunnison area. If a Red Flag Warning is in effect it will be listed under Hazardous Weather Outlook on the Gunnison area forecast page. Red Flag Warning information may also be obtained by calling the following:


Absolutely no fireworks of any type are permitted on Federal or State lands, including;

  • BLM Lands
  • Division of Wildlife Owned Lands
  • National Forests & Parks
  • State Forests & Parks
  • State Wildlife Areas

In unincorporated Gunnison County, the towns of Crested Butte, Mt. Crested Butte, and the City of Gunnison, fireworks that leave the ground or explode are prohibited.

Fire officials from local, State, and Federal Agencies meet regularly to review the situation in Gunnison County and will initiate appropriate measures when and if necessary. For additional information contact the appropriate agency.

Take Precautions

It is normally very dry in the Gunnison Basin and extreme care should be exercised when using fire anywhere in the County, whether for burning weeds, slash piles, or for camping. Make sure you have the appropriate fire suppression tools and supplies readily available when starting a fire. Also, ensure that you have in place a suitable buffer between a fire and potential combustibles. Finally, make sure you use it in a safe, responsible manner.

Understanding Fire Restrictions - Stage I & II