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CRAIG - Crews are battling a wildfire that has scorched about 20,000 acres in northwestern Colorado and killed three cattle. The fire was 50 percent contained as of Thursday night.

Lynn Barclay with the Northwest Colorado Fire Management Unit says the Alkali Fire was reported north of Maybell at about 2:30 p.m. Wednesday and made significant runs through sagebrush and grassland.

Three people were forced to leave the area ahead of the fast-moving flames, which destroyed a barn, a homestead used as a part-time residence and a propane tank.

Incident Commander Todd Wheeler with the Moffat County Sheriff's Office says "the biggest challenge for firefighters is shifting wind from thunder cells and dry fuels."

Seventy people are battling the blaze.

The fire is threatening the nearby pipelines, O&G and a transfer station in the Great Divide Area.

Investigators are still trying to determine what caused the fire.

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