Winds and dry weather fuel Cameron Peak fire as smoke drifts along Front Range.

Windy and dry conditions fueled the Cameron Peak fire on Monday and the fire has crossed a containment line on the northside.

The fire, which has grown to 126,569 acres, or almost 198 square miles, jumped a containment line near the 333A road overnight Sunday, according to fire officials. Fire crews concentrated efforts in the area of the containment line breach Monday with ground crews and air support.

The National Weather Service posted a red flag warning for critical fire conditions on Monday for areas including the northern mountains foothills, North Park and Middle Parks, and most of the northeastern plains. Winds were expected to gust to 35 mph with relative humidity dropping to about 10%.

Monday’s red flag weather winds were capable of blowing an ember about half a mile with an 80% probability of igniting should the ember land in a dry fuel bed, Cameron Peak fire behavioral analysts said. The red flag warning was posted through 6 p.m. Monday.

“These conditions will test fire lines,” officials said. “Especially along the eastern edge and northeast corner of the fire.”

The fire is 42% contained as of Monday. Dry weather conditions are expected to continue at the Cameron Peak fire on Tuesday.

A red flag warning was also posted Monday for the Mullen fire, burning mostly in south central Wyoming. The Mullen fire has crossed the state line and is burning in northern Colorado, in Jackson County. Smoke off of the Mullen was expected to increase on Monday and drift east.

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment extended an air quality warning for the Denver metro area until 4 p.m. Tuesday.

Counties under the action day for Particulates are: Douglas, Jefferson, Denver, western Arapahoe, western Adams, Broomfield, Boulder, Larimer and Weld.

Smoke from the two fires — Cameron Peak and Mullen — is expected to spread south in the Colorado Springs area on Monday night. Moderate to heavy smoke is expected Monday night into Tuesday morning along the Front Range.

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