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Colorado Wildfire Information & Resources

LAKE CHRISTINE FIRE

Fire Start Date: July 3, 2018
Location: Between the towns of El Jebel and Basalt

Fire Information Sources:

 

Reopenings:

  • The majority of pre-evacuation orders and evacuation orders have been lifted and residents of El Jebel and Basalt have returned to their homes.
  • As of Wednesday, July 11, Aspen/Pitkin County Airport is allowing commercial flights to take off and land. The Temporary Flight Restriction (TFR) remains in effect. Visit www.aspenairport.com for more information.
  • Residents of Missouri Heights within Eagle County remain under a pre-evacuation notice.
  • Evacuations have been lifted for Lake Christine Road, Wilderness Road, Promontory Lane, Wild Spring Lane, Ridge Road and Pinion Drive.

 

Closures:

  • CO 82 Westbound/Eastbound Basalt is closed at milemarker 20.9 due to heavy smoke in the area and poor visibility.
  • Portions of White River National Forest are closed. Please visit https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/5895/ for more details.

 

Visiting the Area:

The Lake Christine Fire has burned almost 6,000 acres of wildlife habitat since its ignition July 3rd. As a result, many species of wildlife have been displaced from their food sources and will be moving around more than normally. Many different species might be observed but one of immediate concern are black bears. One was recently observed along the fire line by firefighters. Visitors are reminded to secure all food and garbage. For more information please consult the Colorado Parks and Wildlife website at: CPW.state.co.us/learn/pages/livingwithwildlifewildbears.aspx.

Stage 2 Fire Restrictions are in effect on private, state and federal lands in Eagle, Pitkin and Garfield counties. For information on fire restrictions, please visit www.coemergency.com/p/fire-bans-danger.html.

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment has issued an air quality health advisory due to wildfire smoke from the Lake Christine Fire. Wildfire smoke may reach unhealthy levels. If visibility is less than 5 miles, avoid outdoor activity and stay indoors.

Visitors are reminded to not fly drones near the active wildfire.

Stop by, email or call one of the Aspen area visitor centers

970-925-1940
https://www.aspenchamber.org/about-aspen/visitor-centers
[email protected]

Basalt Chamber of Commerce
970-927-4031
http://www.basaltchamber.org/
https://www.facebook.com/BasaltChamberofCommerce/

Carbondale Chamber of Commerce and Tourism Council of Carbondale
520 S. Third Street, Suite 3, Carbondale
970-963-1890
https://www.carbondale.com

Glenwood Springs Visitor Center
802 Grand Ave., Glenwood Springs
970-945-6580
https://www.visitglenwood.com/

Snowmass Tourism
https://www.gosnowmass.com/

SPRING CREEK FIRE

Fire Start Date: June 27, 2018
Location: Approximately five miles east of Fort Garland and continues to move east toward Highway 160 and the community of La Veta.

Fire Information Sources:

 

Reopenings:

  • US 160 is now reopened but subject to reclosure depending on fire activity.
  • Highway 12 is now open to all traffic from La Veta to Cuchara Pass.
  • The Rio Grande Scenic Railroad has reopened and is accepting visitors. For information on the train ride visit http://www.coloradotrain.com or call 1-877-726-7245.

 

Closures:

  • Visit www.cotrip.org for information on travel.
  • Highway 69 is closed from Red Rock Rd. (5 miles west of I-25) and the Custer County Line.


Visiting the Area:

The Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve, Rio Grande National Forest and San Juan National Forest are open with Stage II fire restrictions. Stop by the Colorado Welcome Center in Alamosa at 610 State Ave. Alamosa, CO 81101 or visit http://www.sanluisvalley.org for area activity suggestions and alternatives or give them a call at 800-258-7597 (toll free) or 719-589-9396 (local).

Visitors are reminded remain attentive and use caution in fire impacted areas. Fire weakened trees continue to pose a hazard and flash floods are occurring in areas that receive rainfall.

Recovery Update:

The best way to support communities impacted by wildfires is to plan a trip and visit. Communities are open for business and eager to show visitors their tourism offerings.

The Spanish Peaks Community Foundation has set up the Spring Fire Relief Fund for victims of the Spring Fire. Donations may be made online at springfireco.org

Checks can be mailed to the Spanish Peaks Community Foundation, P.O. Box 1101, Walsenburg, CO 81089. Please make checks payable to Spanish Peaks Community Foundation (SPCF) with memo Spring Fire Relief Fund and deliver to Spanish Peaks Community Foundation, P.O. Box 1101, Walsenburg, CO 81089.

Checks or cash can be deposited in person at the First National Bank of Trinidad in Trinidad, in Walsenburg at the Huerfano Branch, or in Raton.

Disaster relief donations can also be made to the Care and Share Food Bank for Southern Colorado. Volunteer opportunities are also available through Care and Share. 

Donations can also be brought to the Huerfano County Donation Center at 611 Main St in Walsenburg. Donations for evacuated pets and livestock can be taken to the Huerfano County Fairgrounds.

WESTON PASS FIRE:

Report Date: June 28, 2018
Location: 9 miles southwest of Fairplay
 
Fire Information Sources:

 

Reopenings:

  • US 285 is reopened from Otero Junction to County Road 22.
  • County Road 22 is reopened to the public.
  • Mandatory evacuation for Campground of the Rockies (CORA) has been lifted and is no longer in pre-evacuation status.

 

Closures:

  • US 285 from Antero Junction to Fairplay (milemarker 162-182) is closed due to flash flood damage.
  • Current road closures include Forest Service Road 442 and Forest Service Road 158. Visit http://www.cotrip.org for information on travel.
  • The Pike and San Isabel National Forest has a closure in place for the portion of the forest included with the Weston Pass planning area.
  • The Buffalo Peaks Wilderness Area is closed due to the nearby fire. 

THE SUGARLOAF FIRE

Report Date: June 28, 2018
Location: North of Loveland Pass and 13 miles southwest of Fraser, in a remote area of the Williams Fork Valley in Grand County

Fire Information Sources:


Closures:

  • Due to fire operations and smoke, an area closure for a portion of National Forest System lands has been signed. Particular areas of interest closed under this order include the Sugarloaf and South Fork Campgrounds; the Byers Peak Wilderness; Ptarmigan Pond; South Fork, Boardwalk, Ute Peak, Ute Pass, Kinney Creek, Byers Peak, Keyser Ridge, Lake Evelyn, St. Louis Lake, Williams Fork and Darling Creek trailheads; and numerous National Forest System roads and trails. https://www.fs.usda.gov/main/arp/home
  • Stage 2 fire restrictions are in place on all of the Sulphur Ranger district and portions of the Clear Creek Ranger Districts in Clear Creek, Jefferson, Park and Grand counties.
  • Stage 1 fire restrictions are in place on the Boulder, Canyon Lakes ranger districts, and portions of the Creek Ranger District in Boulder, Gilpin and Larimer counties.

THE 416 FIRE

Report Date: June 1, 2018
Location: La Plata County, located on the San Juan National Forest approximately 10–13 miles north of Durango, along the west side of US Highway 550

Fire Information Sources:


Reopenings:

  • The Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad resumed its coal-fired steam train passenger service to Silverton on July 12.
  • Purgatory Resort reopened for summer fun and adventures with lodging on June 29. Summer activities resumed July 2.
  • The National Forest Service listed the San Juan National Forest under Stage II fire restrictions. On Thursday, June 21, at 3pm, the San Juan National Forest (SJNF) re-opened to the public.
  • Lands managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) in the Durango area were reopened at 3pm on Thursday, June 21, including Animas City Mountain, Skyline, Grandview and Turtle Lake/East Animas climbing areas, as well as Perins Peak Wildlife Management area.
  • The  City of Durango reopened all open space and trails beginning at 3pm on Thursday, June 21, with the exception of Lake Nighthorse and the surrounding shoreline, which reopened at 7am on Friday, June 22.


Closures:

  • An area around the active 416 and Burro Fires will remain closed to public entry, including the segments of the Colorado Trail from Molas Pass to the Junction Creek terminus.  
  • The Hermosa area, including all roads and trails, remains closed due to the 416 Fire. For your safety and that of all emergency and fire management teams, please abide by the closure.


Air Quality:

Areas of heavy smoke have been observed throughout large parts of La Plata County. Purgatory may see moderate to unhealthy for sensitive groups conditions in the afternoon, clearing by the evening. Smoke impacts will be felt the most in Hermosa while other down valley areas may see smoke at lesser concentrations.

Visiting Southwest Colorado:

Southwestern Colorado is open for business with countless recreational opportunities available. Most of Durango's businesses and attractions have not been affected by the fire. Follow @VisitDurango on Facebook and Instagram to see unaffected summertime activities and adventure inspiration. Stop by or call the Durango Welcome Center at 802 Main Avenue or 800-525-8855 for alternate activity suggestions.

For ideas on recreational and tourism opportunities in other areas of southwest Colorado, please visit the following websites:
La Plata County: https://www.colorado.com/association/la-plata-county
San Juan County: http://www.sanjuancountycolorado.us/index.html
Silverton, CO Chamber of Commerce: http://www.silvertoncolorado.com

Recovery Update:

The best way to support communities impacted by wildfires is to plan a trip and visit. Communities are open for business and eager to show visitors their tourism offerings.

The Community Emergency Relief Fund (CERF) is accepting financial contributions for the 416 Fire. You can donate online at our website: swcommunityfoundation.org. Click donate, and add CERF as special instructions to seller. Or donate in person at the Bank of the San Juans (144 E. 8th St.). An Advisory Committee of local stakeholders will distribute funds as needed.

The Durango Food Bank is accepting donations of non-perishable items to distribute to evacuees. Monetary donations are also accepted. Donations are tax-deductible. Contact the food bank at 970-375-2672 or email [email protected].

La Plata County Humane Society is providing sheltering to displaced pets. Visit their website to find out how to volunteer or support their efforts with a donation.