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Firefighting DC-10 Makes a Temporary Home in Casper [PHOTOS]

A firefighting making its home in Casper
Anthony Pollreisz, K2 Radio

An uncommon visitor continued its stay at Casper-Natrona County International Airport on Tuesday.

One of only two aircraft of its type in the world, a DC-10 outfitted for firefighting is one part of the multi-aircraft fleet that’s aiding in the firefighting effort at the Sheepherder Hill fire complex.

Normally, the airport sees only commuter-sized turboprops and jets, along with personal and military aircraft.

Kevin Hopf is the captain of the three-person crew manning the DC-10. He says, in the past, his aircraft has been an exceptional firefighting tool.

“It’s been a great platform for what we’ve been doing with it,” Hopf said.

Hopf says certain attributes of Casper Mountain make fighting fires in the Sheepherder Hill complex challenging.

“We’ve seen a lot of homes intermixed with fuels,” Hopf said. “The fuels are packed tight, the trees are close together, and there’s just a lot of homes in that area.”

Hopf says he’s made over 500 runs in the aircraft, fighting wildfires throughout the west and the western plains.

Next: Aerial Photos of ‘Sheep Herder Hill’ Fire

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