The Lake Christine Fire is burning at 6,100 Acres and is now 39 percent contained.
The dry subalpine slopes and steep rocky slopes that surround Basalt made containing the fire difficult. Now, Keith Brink, operation section chief for the Northern Rockies Incident Command, estimates the team will reach 45 percent containment by the end of the day.
Residents east of Cattle Creek Road, including Blue Creek Trail, Blue Creek Overlook, Vista Hi Drive and the three houses on the road in between were allowed to return to their homes last night at 8 pm. Approximately 782 evacuees from 279 homes have returned home.
Roads that will remain closed and under evacuation orders are upper Cedar Drive and the entire Lake Christine Wildlife area.
Small flares will continue in the burn area as parts of the fire burns itself out. Residents are warned not to contact police if they see a small flame in the burn area. Smoke will also be visible throughout the valley and residents should be aware of air quality alerts.