Wildfire

Andrea J Holland

A wildfire caused by lightning near Glenwood Springs cost between $80,000 and $100,000 to fight. It’s now fully controlled.

The Red Canyon Fire started Friday afternoon in dry juniper, pinyon and sagebrush. It burned seven acres on BLM land about three miles southeast of Glenwood. David Boyd with the BLM says two helicopters and between 50 and 60 firefighters worked it.

"When you have a fire this close to the community, you want to keep it small. One reason it stayed small was because we had so many people who could respond to it."

Sally Jewell, the Secretary of the Interior and Tom Vilsack, the Secretary of Agriculture, came to Colorado Tuesday to urge a change in how the federal government pays to fight catastrophic wildfires.

"The solution is for these fires to be looked upon in the same way we look at tornadoes, hurricanes, and floods, they're natural disasters and they should be funded as such," Vilsack said.

Interior's Jewell agrees the funding mechanism should change.

droughtmonitor.unl.edu

Even with all of the recent rain and snow in Western Colorado, the region continues to be in a drought. Some areas have “severe drought” conditions, including the southwest section of Pitkin County. Wildfire season typically gets underway in May and June. Aspen Public Radio’s Marci Krivonen spoke with Doug Paul from the Upper Colorado River Fire Management Unit about the wildfire outlook.

Doug Paul is with the Upper Colorado River Fire Management Unit, which manages fire on federal lands. 

U.S. Army/Sgt. Jecca Geffre

Governor John Hickenlooper was in Rifle Wednesday at a ribbon cutting ceremony for a new wildfire research center. 

The Center of Excellence for Advanced Technology Aerial Firefighting will officially open later this summer but, elected leaders from around the state gathered Wednesday for an unofficial welcome.

"We are pleased as punch to have the Center of Excellence here, at Rifle/Garfield County Airport," said Garfield County Commissioner Mike Samson.

Area Fire Officials Plan for 2015 Wildfire Season

Apr 29, 2015

About two dozen fire and municipal officials from the valley gathered at the Aspen Fire Station Monday morning to coordinate efforts for the coming year. The annual meeting is called a wildfire tabletop exercise. Parker Lathrop is Deputy Fire Chief with the Aspen Fire Protection District. He spoke to Aspen Public Radio’s Rob St. Mary.

About two dozen fire and municipal officials from the valley gathered at the Aspen Fire Station this morning  to coordinate efforts for the coming year. The meeting is called a wildfire tabletop exercise and aims to share knowledge on the lay of the land and resources available as wildfire season ramps up. Parker Lathrop is Deputy Fire Chief with the Aspen Fire Protection District. He says the drier than usual winter could create a challenge in the coming months.

http://www.extension.org/

    Aspen’s Fire Department is doing extra fire prevention near Snowmass Village this spring, and expanding ongoing efforts on Red Mountain in Aspen. The goal is to limit the amount of fuels--or things that can burn-- near homes.

Welcome to Valley Roundup, a review of the top news stories in the valley in the past week.

The Aspen City Council this week chose a brewery/business incubator/TV station to be the new tenant at the old art museum.

The long dormant Buffalo Valley property outside of Glenwood Springs looks like it will become an apartment complex.

A new aerial fire center is coming to the Rifle airport. And the citizens of that town may just get a dose of fluoride in their water.

Mike Eliason / Santa Barbara County Fire Department

Rifle will soon be home to a new wildland firefighting training center. The Rifle - Garfield County Airport has been chosen to house what’s being called the Center of Excellence for Advanced Technology Aerial Firefighting. It’s planned to be a research location for testing out aerial firefighting techniques, and will be used by local, state, and federal entities.

Welcome to Mountain Edition.

Elected leaders in Aspen choose a brewery - slash - small business incubator to fill the city-owned Old Power House.

Unstable snow on local ski slopes prompts the Aspen Skiing Company to temporarily close terrain.

A professional cross country ski racer is home from the World Championships. Aspen’s Simi Hamilton looks back on his season.

There won’t be a sentence for a fatal highway 133 crash for another month.

We hear from the head of Colorado’s largest oil and gas organization about why she’s leaving her post.

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