As the wildfires in Colorado rages on, more than 500 firefighters are being deployed to 12 square miles of flames in order to prevent the blaze from reaching a reservoir for the city of Greeley. However, rising temperatures and dry thunderstorms will make their work all the more difficult and dangerous.
On Friday, 15 homes were ordered to evacuate. However, residents from 65 homes were allowed to return as firefighters slowly battle the raging fire. So far, it is approximately five percent contained as two planes, five helicopters and hundreds on the ground work to eliminate the blaze. Fire supervisors hope to allow the remaining evacuees to return to their homes this evening, reported the Associated Press.
John Hasler said this was his second time he was told to evacuate in less than 10 years.
I was more worried when that  fire was coming through here, Hasler said. It had already burned around 10,000 acres and destroyed a home and was moving with some force when it was heading here.
His home survived that wildfire. Now, however, his home is surrounded by 40 acres of lawn that is closely cut grass. He believes he would be able to extinguish any blaze that gets too close to his home.
The blaze which began near Fort Collins, Colo., has grown dramatically recently from less than 1,000 acres in the Roosevelt National Forest to 5,090 acres, reported the L.A. Times.
Gov. John Hickenlooper declared the are a state of emergency to allow $3 million of the state's disaster fun to spent to on containing the massive fire, reported AP.
The Colorado fire is approaching the Milton Seaman Reservoir, said officials. On Thursday evening, they said that the water supply has not been affected and firefighters hope to contain the fire before it gets any closer.
Officials believe the fire was man made, but it is still under investigation, reported the L.A. Times.
Earlier this week, smoke poured into the Poudre Canyon as winds moved the flames in various directions.
Large plumes of smoke descended across the canyon and 20 miles west of Fort Collins. Larimer County Sheriff's deputies patrolled the surrounding roads, hoping to keep pedestrians safe and traffic moving as onlookers on the highways stopped their cars to watch the blaze, reported The Northwestern.
I can't believe that it went that far, said Deke Tomasovich, a retired firefighter who's lived in the area since 1976, reported The Northwestern. Going down (the canyon), it looked real bad, a real thick plume. When you see brown and slightly black, you know that's bad.
The blaze was one of several burning throughout the West. In Arizona, a massive wildfire sprang up in an historic mining town that grew to over 12 square miles. The blaze was reportedly burning within five miles of Pine Flats and Arizona firefighters set up a defensive line. New Mexico, Utah and California were also hit with fires during the onset of the summer months.