Spring rains fueled green growth in the Highland Lakes that has turned into dry fuel for wildfires in 2018. Record-setting temperatures have dried out vegetation in the area and made this summer one of the worst wildfire seasons in recent memory. Local fire departments have battled multiple wildfires over thousands of acres beginning July 17.
This page is a collection of images from the 2018 wildfire season in Burnet, Llano, and Blanco counties.
A wildfire that started July 29 forced the evacuation of Inks Lake State Park and nearby homes on CR 114 to Park Road 4 in Burnet County. Courtesy photo
Hellas Construction workers continue to clear and flatten land in preparation for artificial turf on the new football field and an eight-lane track surrounding it. Staff photo by Jennifer Fierro
A wildfire that began in the late afternoon on Sunday, June 29, on private property near Inks Lake State Park forced the evacuation of about 250 park visitors. This photo was taken at 5:22 p.m. from the Inks Lake walking bridge looking southeast toward the fire. Staff photo by Jared Fields
Area fire crews aren’t calling the CR 108 Fire north of Burnet 100 percent contained just yet. The fire burned almost 800 acres and will be monitored for a few more days. Photo by James Oakley
A wildfire scorched about 15 acres July 23 on RR 1174 near Whitewater Springs. The road was temporarily closed as firefighters contained the blaze. Photo courtesy of David Maple/U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
The Smith West Fire in northern Blanco County and southern Llano County has had a devastating effect on vegetation. Firefighters and emergency workers worked around the clock to get the fire under control. Courtesy photo
Texas A&M Forest Service crews continued to battle wildfires in Blanco and Llano counties July 19 in the areas of Smith West Ranch Road and CR 308 by dousing hot spots, setting so-called 'back burns' to carve out a containment perimeter, and using aircraft and bulldozers. Courtesy photos
Rick Edwards, who has a family ranch in Blanco County, invited fire crews onto his property July 17 as a wildfire approached an area adjacent to his gate just off RR 962 in Blanco County. Courtesy photo
Kristina Vasek was at Inks Lake State Park when the fire started. She posted to the DailyTrib.com Facebook page to say they had to evacuate immediately when park officials ordered visitors to leave as ash began falling around them. Photo courtesy of Kristina Vasek
Exiting Park Road 4 at about 5:30 p.m. July 29. Photo courtesy of Kristina Vasek
This photo of the Park Road 4 fire was taken from the Colorado River arm of Lake LBJ by Phil Schawe.
The Park Road 4 fire smoke cloud as seen from Tobeyville on July 29. Photo courtesy of Debbie Sapp
Visitors to Inks Lake State Park were forced to evacuate July 29 when a fire began between the park and CR 116. This is the smoke cloud they saw when they drove out of the park. Photo courtesy of Kristina Vasek
More than 100 firefighting personnel, including from out-of-state agencies, have assisted in battling the Park Road 4 fire in Burnet County. Courtesy photo by James Oakley