UPDATED: Snow Canyon Fire grows to 1,000 acres

WINCHESTER HILLS — A brush fire that started Friday night on the outskirts of Diamond Valley has grown to 1,000 acres by Saturday morning.

The glow of flames from the Snow Canyon Fire looms in the distance behind Diamond Valley Elementary School in Diamond Valley, Utah, on Nov. 6, 2020. | Photo by Chris Reed, St. George News

Authorities have tentatively determined the cause to be people shooting targets. The fire started at Lava Ridge above Winchester Hills.

Residents south of Diamond Valley Drive were alerted to prepare for possible evacuation from the fire, named the Snow Canyon Fire.

For a time, state Route 18 was closed in both directions, but by 8:30 p.m. both sites were reopened. However, the Utah Department of Transportation warns traffic on the highway may still be affected by the fire overnight.

The flames appeared to be driven by the wind away from the Winchester Hills and The Ledges neighborhoods just to the south and moving north toward Diamond Valley.

Flames shoot up from the Snow Canyon Fire above Winchester Hills, Utah, on Nov. 6, 2020. | Photo by Chris Reed, St. George News

In Diamond Valley, the streets were dark and quiet, save for the rush of wind. Behind homes on Sapphire Drive, smoke and an orange glow could be seen about a half-mile away as a smattering of fire vehicles were stationed nearby.

The fire was first reported around 6 p.m. The fire was burning short grass while the flames cast an orange glow on the rocks of the Red Cliffs Conservation Area.

Eleven fire agencies responded to the fire, including those from Diamond Valley, Dammeron Valley, Winchester, Santa Clara-Ivins, Veyo, Hurricane, Washington City, Bureau of Land Management and state park rangers.

For a time just before 10 p.m., flames could be seen in the distance from the Diamond Valley Elementary School. However, by 10:30 p.m., firefighters looked to be winning the battle as the glow on the horizon began to dim.

Those firefighting efforts continued through the night.

Updated Nov. 7, 2020, 8 a.m.: Information on size, cause.

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Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2020, all rights reserved.

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