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A view of a wildfire burning on Tuesday, Nov. 16, 2021 in an area south of Fish Creek Road in the Little Valley area on the south side of Estes Park. (Larimer County Sheriff Justin Smith)

A fast-growing wildfire in Little Valley near Estes Park is threatening structures and prompted evacuation orders Tuesday.

The Kruger Rock fire, which was reported around 7 a.m., was burning in an area at Little Valley Road and Fish Creek Road near the south side of Estes Park, according to the Larimer County Sheriff’s Office.

The blaze was about 133 acres as of 6:30 p.m. and 15% contained, according to the Sheriff’s Office. 150 firefighters and other personnel are working to put out the fire.

Residents and businesses in the following areas are under mandatory evacuation orders: Little Valley, Hermit Park, Meadowdale and areas south to the Boulder County line along Highway 36. People have been told to leave as quickly as possible, without stopping to gather belongings or make efforts to protect their homes or businesses. 

A warning from the Estes Park Emergency Communications Center cited “immediate and imminent danger.” 

Highway 36 is closed at Mall Road in Estes Park and at Apple Valley Road, west of Lyons, as authorities respond to the wildfire.

“Our main focus now is getting residents out of the way and sizing up the fire. Winds are definitely a factor here,” Larimer County Sheriff Justin Smith wrote in a Facebook post about 9 a.m.

Authorities haven’t determined the cause of the blaze, Smith said.

Rocky Mountain National Park closed the Twin Sisters area Tuesday afternoon out of “an abundance of caution.” The Roosevelt National Forest also closed lands south and east of Estes Park.

Warm, dry and windy weather with strong gusts are expected throughout the day Tuesday, according to the National Weather Service, which issued critical fire weather warnings for much of the Front Range and parts of southwestern Colorado.

Evacuees can relocate to the Estes Park Events Center at 1125 Rooftop Way and LifeBridge Christian Church at 10345 Ute Highway in Longmont, and sign up to receive updates by text message by texting LCEVAC to 888777.

Thy Vo previously was a politics reporter for The Colorado Sun.