TODAY   |  June 20, 2013

Western wildfires rage, hundreds evacuated

Hundreds of people have been evacuated from their homes as wildfires burn across the Western U.S. in Colorado, Arizona, New Mexico, Utah, Oregon, and California. Officials are saying it could be the worst fire season in a century. NBC’s Gabe Gutierrez reports.

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>>> dangerous wild fires out west are leading to more evacuations. nbc's gabe gutierrez is in confer, colorado . good morning.

>> reporter: natalie, good morning. firefighters battled new fires here overnight and hot, dry and windy conditions later today are not expected to help. more is under fire today. another fire in pike national forest southwest of denver has forced more than 100 people from their homes.

>> that looks bad to me.

>> that looks real bad.

>> reporter: near prescott, arizona, about 600 firefighters are rushing to squelch this blaze, nearly eight square miles , almost 500 homes have been evacuated there. large wildfires are also raging in new mexico, utah, oregon and california where flames threaten the main route into yosemite national park . officials expect this could be the worst fire season in a century. back in colorado , heather dubois is finally returning home after the most destructive fire in the state's history. a painful discovery, her late grandmother's vase.

>> these are the things that are hard, 'cause you can't replace this.

>> reporter: that deadly black forest fire that destroyed heather's home is almost fully contained. not the case in arizona, where that wildfire is burning out of control, natalie.

>> gabe gutierrez in conifer, colorado , thanks.