The official tally of homes destroyed by the Black Forest Fire has increased from 419 to 473 with 17 houses partially damaged, the El Paso County Sheriff's Office said early Saturday.
But there's also good news as authorities raised the number of homes in the fire area that are apparently undamaged from 2,645 to 3,181.
Aided by some rain in the burn area on Friday afternoon, firefighters have increased fire containment from 5 percent to 30 percent. As fire crews gain better control on the northern edge of the fire, all evacuated Elbert County residents were allowed to return home on Saturday, the Elbert County Sheriff's Office said.
On Friday, the city of Colorado Springs lifted its mandatory evacuations and El Paso County lifted its evacuations for those living west of Highway 83 and east of Meridian Road.
Those returning residents will be asked for identification at the checkpoints.
All pre-evacuation notices for Douglas County have also been lifted.
However, voluntary evacuations remain from North Gate and Old North Gate to Interquest and Highway 83 to Voyager Parkway and those living west of Highway 83.
Meteorologists say the amount of rain over the fire area was about a tenth of an inch.
"It's not a lot, but a blessing. That's 42.6 million gallons of water that fell on the assumed 15,700 acres of fire area. That's roughly 3,672 DC-10 drops, assuming that a DC-10 can drop about 11,000 gallons each time," said a local forecaster.
With the rain came several hundred lightning strikes, but those didn't appear to cause any harm.
The area has been cloudy and relatively cool for most of the day, great news for firefighters on the front lines.
"I'm so wet and a little chilly and I've never been happier to say that." Gov. John Hickenlooper said in a Friday afternoon briefing. He also was encouraged about the progress of the fire and the spirit that the residents have shown in the face of adversity.
"The whole state is behind you. This is a resilient county and this is a resilient state," Hickenlooper said.
Officials at the Black Forest Fire remain very optimistic about getting a handle on the blaze even as the number of homes destroyed continues to climb because more homes are being assessed for damage.
"We did not lose large chunks of land last night," El Paso County Sheriff Terry Maketa said during a news conference at 9 a.m. Friday. "It was kind of that turning point we've been looking for."
"The firefighters had a good night," Incident Commander Rich Harvey agreed.
Harvey said no ground was lost and no new structures burned overnight.
"(We're ) very optimistic about the day," Harvey said.
Maketa even joked that Friday was a good day to get your car washed, in hopes that the action might bring rain to the area.
Maketa said 38,000 people remain evacuated in a 93,000-acre area.