After becoming increasingly worse each week since early December, Colorado's drought conditions are unchanged from last week. Stable conditions, however, represent grave concerns for much of the state.
This article has been updated to reflect the road reopening.
The Colorado Department of Transportation reported Saturday afternoon that US Highway 24 was closed in both directions between Vona and Stratton. It has since reopened.
A structure fire in the area led to the closure, which was first reported Saturday at 3:07 p.m. The road was reopened about an hour later.
Information about the building and damages was not immediately available.
An earthquake measuring 2.2 on the Richter Scale struck near Greeley mid-morning Friday.
According to the United States Geological Survey, the quake occurred shortly after 10:00 a.m., and was centered about six miles east of the city at a depth of nearly four miles. No one reported feeling the minor quake, and no damages or injuries have been reported.
Since the first of year, Colorado has experienced five earthquakes measuring 2.0 or greater.
As fields and reservoirs are turning white with the arrival of roosting waterfowl during their traditional winter migration, plans are well underway for the annual celebration known as the High Plains Snow Goose Festival scheduled February 8-11.
In its 16th year, the festival attracts families, bird watchers and a variety of outdoor enthusiasts to see the Arctic geese as they arrive at their winter roosts along the Western Central Flyway that includes Colorado, New Mexico and the Texas panhandle.
A swath of south central will continue to see elevated fire risk Wednesday.
The National Weather Service has issued a red flag warning, set to start at 11:00 a.m., as wind gusts up to 30 miles per hour return to the area. Temperatures will be slightly cooler than Tuesday, but still reach the 60s, while humidity will be in the 10 to 15 percent range.
The National Weather Service has issued a red flag warning for the fire danger in southern Colorado Tuesday.
The warning takes effect at 10:00 a.m. for Fremont, Custer, Pueblo and Huerfano counties, along with most of El Paso, western Las Animas, and smaller portions of eastern Costilla, Alamosa and Saguache counties.
Caution should be used with outdoor activities that could spark a fire as west winds gust as high as 35 miles per hour. Humidity is expected to fall below 10 percent while temperatures reach the low 70s.
The closeout to January continues a generally warm and dry trend for Colorado's eastern plains, with a return of fire weather conditions expected Tuesday. Western Colorado, though cooler, will also see above-average temperatures to kick off the week.
While mountain areas can expect a small amount of snow along with early morning wind Sunday, most of the region will be dry, with temperatures above seasonal norms.
Last weekend's snow storm brought no relief to drought conditions that have rapidly expanded across most of Colorado since early December, and severe drought continued to increase in the southern part of the state.