A fast moving wildland fire occurred in late March in Douglas County, Colo., near Franktown. Strong south winds of 25-30 mph gusting to 40+ mph resulted in the fire rapidly spreading to the north in tall grass and scrup oak. Units initially responded from Franktown Fire, Castle Rock Fire and Rescue, and South Metro Fire, with numerous additional resources assisting as the fire continued to spread. The fire was named the Burning Tree fire.
Initial south winds shifted to a westerly then northerly direction causing the fire to spread in a different directions, with units redeploying to protect structures threatened with shifting winds. Helicopter support was quickly requested early in the fire, and provided water drops throughout the afternoon. Later in the day an additional helicopter as well as a SEAT assisted in fire suppression. One hundred percent containment of the fire was achieved the following day, approximately 26 hours after the fire began.
At the height of the fire, more than 8,500 people were evacuated from neighborhoods threatened by the fire, as well as numerous horses from properties in and near the fire.
No injuries to fire personel or the public were reported, and, despite homes being all around the burn area, only one home suffered minor damage.