DENVER (AP) — The Latest on wildfires burning in the West: (all times local):
Another day of hot, dry and windy weather is expected in southern Wyoming, where a wildfire has been burning virtually unabated this week.
The fire burning in the Medicine Bow National Forest just north of the Colorado state line has destroyed one home and two outbuildings since it was first reported on Sunday.
Firefighters, who have been concentrating much of their efforts on protecting homes and structures, have not been able to gain any containment of the fire, mainly because of strong winds driving the blaze.
Fire officials say wind gusts of up to 30 mph (48 kph) are expected Thursday afternoon.
The fire has burned about 17 square miles (44 square kilometers) and forced the evacuation of nearly 400 residences in 10 small communities in the area.
National Forest Service officials told residents of 163 more homes near the fire in the southwestern Colorado to be ready to leave Thursday — as well as residents who had been allowed to return to 180 homes on Wednesday.
Dry thunderstorms and gusty winds have expanded a San Juan National Forest wildfire that has forced evacuations of more than 1,900 homes.
The fire 13 miles (43 kilometers) north of Durango has blackened more than 45 square miles (116 square kilometers) and forced officials to close the San Juan National Forest in the Four Corners Region.
The Four Corners region where Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona and Utah meet is in the middle of a large swath of exceptional drought, the worst category of drought.