In Colorado, 2-month-old Cameron Peak Fire tops 200,000 acres

IVAN PEREIRA

Hundreds of thousands of acres in Colorado continue to go up in flames as firefighters battle several wildfires throughout the state, including one that has been burning for over two months.

The Cameron Peak Fire, which began on Aug. 13, is the largest recorded wildfire in Colorado's history, according to the Rocky Mountain Area Coordination Center. The fire, located west of Fort Collins, had burned 203,253 acres and was 62% contained as of Sunday afternoon, according to fire officials and the U.S. Forest Service.

About 1,542 firefighters were battling the blaze in different sections, the U.S. Forest Service said in a news release.

MORE: Colorado's largest-ever wildfire grows to nearly 200,000 acres

"In anticipation of the fire advancing, crews and heavy equipment built contingency lines and focused on structure protection," the agency said in a statement.

PHOTO: The Cameron Peak Fire, the largest wildfire in Colorado's history, burns outside Estes Park, Colorado, Oct. 16, 2020.  (Jim Urquhart/Reuters)
PHOTO: The Cameron Peak Fire, the largest wildfire in Colorado's history, burns outside Estes Park, Colorado, Oct. 16, 2020. (Jim Urquhart/Reuters)

Officials said firefighters have been aided by improving weather conditions. On Saturday evening, wind speeds dropped and the humidity shifted to a safer level, according to the U.S. Forest Service.

"Fire managers will take advantage of this weather change to utilize aircraft and employ aggressive fire suppression actions," the agency said in its statement.

A chance of snow Sunday night is expected to bring relief, but higher wind gusts are also in the forecast, according to the U.S. Forest Service.

In the meantime, the state is dealing with other smaller fires that are burning in different areas.

MORE: California surpasses 4 million acres burned as battle against wildfires goes on

The Calwood Fire, located just north of Boulder, erupted Saturday and has burned 8,788 acres, according to the U.S. Forest Service. Around 250 firefighters were battling that fire and had 5% of the blaze contained, according to Chief Mike Wagner of Boulder County Sheriff’s Office.

PHOTO: A slurry bomber drops retardant over the CalWood fire near Buckingham Park northwest of Boulder, Colorado, Oct. 17, 2020. (Eric Lutzens/medianews Group/Denver Post via Getty Images)
PHOTO: A slurry bomber drops retardant over the CalWood fire near Buckingham Park northwest of Boulder, Colorado, Oct. 17, 2020. (Eric Lutzens/medianews Group/Denver Post via Getty Images)

"The plan was to hit the fire really heavy with air resources," he told reporters at a news conference Sunday. "With the conditions we have down here, and visibility, we can’t fly. So as soon as the weather resolves, incident command is hoping to utilize the air resources to attack the fire much better."

The East Troublesome Fire, which is located just north of Route 40, had burned 11,562 acres and was 5% contained as of Sunday afternoon, according to the U.S. Forest Service.

Colorado's fires are part of a surge in dangerous wildfires that have spread throughout the West Coast and Rocky Mountain region since the summer.

Scientists and meteorologists say climate change has been the leading factor behind the rise in fires, as rising temperatures, drier air and strong wind gusts have fueled and strengthened the blazes.

MORE: How climate change affects wildfires, like those in the West, and makes them worse

Last week, there were at least four dozen large uncontained wildfires burning in western states, forcing evacuations in several towns in California and Colorado.

California's Department of Forestry and Fire Protection reports that wildfires in California this year have burned through more than 4.1 million acres, damaged over 5,400 structures, and killed eight people.

ABC News' Matt Fuhrman, Cammeron Parrish and Daniel Peck contributed to this report.

In Colorado, 2-month-old Cameron Peak Fire tops 200,000 acres originally appeared on abcnews.go.com