Yesterday on social media Aaron Watson informed fans that the Mesquite Heat Fire is getting a little too close to home.

Aaron shared a video yesterday day with the caption " Fire is near my ranch... they just evacuated our little town. Please pray for our firefighters and everyone in harm's way. Lord gives us some rain."

Aaron Watson and his family live around the Abilene area which is under an emergency declaration. The fire has been burning for three days now.  The small towns of Buffalo Gap and Jed Ned have been evacuated and are in severe danger.

As of 9:45 this morning the Abilene Reporter-News provided the following update:

Fire crews had the Mesquite Heat Fire southwest of View contained to about 30% and 1,500 acres through early Wednesday afternoon.

Then the winds shifted.

"Yesterday we were looking fairly well starting off. We got to about 30% containment. We're still holding 1,500 acres, and then we had a dry line move in from the west, which caused a wind shift," said Stuart Morris, Forest Service regional wildland urban interface coordinator.

The winds out of the west "led to the sporadic activity" that pushed the wildfire to the east, breaking containment lines and jumping U.S. Highway 277. By Wednesday night, the fire was 5,000 acres with 5% containment.

The new activity prompted more evacuations early Wednesday evening around the View area and the closing of a section of U.S. Highway 277 between View and Coronado's Camp as well as Farm to Market 89 from Coronado's Camp to Buffalo Gap.

Taylor County Judge Downing Bolls Jr. issued Wednesday night a disaster declaration and mandatory evacuations for the following areas that remained in effect as of Thursday morning:

Texas A&M Forest Service
Texas A&M Forest Service
  • City of Buffalo Gap.

  • Country Place South to Farm to Market 89.

  • South of Farm to Market 1235.

  • Hillside Road.

  • Denton Valley Road. (Note: This may be a typo and referring to Hidden Valley Road)

  • Braune Road.

  • County Road 297.

  • "Anybody in the vicinity of the fire," the order stated.

With very hot temperatures, very dry conditions, and low humidity levels, getting this fire under containment is proving to be very difficult.

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