SCOTTSBLUFF - The Buffalo Creek Fire in the Nebraska panhandle grew to 1,295 acres as of 7:30 p.m. Sunday night.

The blaze is located approximately 11 miles south of Scottsbluff on the Scotts Bluff/Banner County line east of Highway 71. The fire started shortly before 12 p.m. Sunday.

The National Weather Service in Cheyenne said winds out of the west-northwest to the west-southwest sustained at 10-20 mph, with gusts of 20-30 mph, Sunday night challenged the multiple fire departments responding to the scene on the ground and in the air. 

Conditions Monday weren't expected to improve. The weather service says to expect rapid fire growth on the ongoing Buffalo Creek wildfire late Monday morning through the afternoon. They issued a red flag warning until 6 p.m. for Scotts Bluff, Banner, Kimball, Morrill and Cheyenne Counties in Nebraska. Goshen County and the extreme southeast part of Laramie County in Wyoming are also included. 

West winds are forecast to be sustained at 20 to 25 mph with gusts to 40 mph. Relative humidity will be at 13 to 15 percent.

The NWS recommends no outdoor burning Monday.

Nebraska Game and Parks Commission announced Sunday the Buffalo Creek Wildlife Management Area is closed due to the fire. 

People were asked to stay out of the area as crews worked to contain the fire and evacuate any hunters that may have been in the area when the fire started. Game and Parks said Sunday night they believed all people had been evacuated from the property. 

The cause of the fire is remains under investigation.