Fire burns in eastern Rocky Mountain National Park

Fern Lake Fire, Rocky Mountain National Park

Smoke from the Fern Lake Fire in Rocky Mountain National Park blocks the sun. (Photo: Photo by VIP Hahn)

(Update October 12: The fire has grown to 660 acres with zero containment. Possible mountain snow forecast for tonight and tomorrow.)

A fire broke out yesterday in Rocky Mountain National Park, near the trailheads for the Cub Lake and Fern Lake trails. At last report the fire had burned approximately 300 acres, with no containment in the steep, heavily forested area. Campers and hikers in the area, including campers at the Moraine Park Campground, were ordered out and trails in the area were closed. Bear Lake and Upper Beaver Meadows roads are closed.

Smoke from the fire is reportedly heavy in Estes Park, just a few miles east of the fire. While no threat to the town has been reported, the fire is in the popular, heavily traveled eastern section of the park. This part of the park experiences a large number of visitors this time of year and their access will be restricted while the fire is in progress. Trail Ridge Road remains open at this time. Old Fall River Road has been closed for the season.


The Park Service has posted a few more photos on Picasa.
See InciWeb, the Incident Information System, for the latest updates and information.

Categories: Green, Photography, Rocky Mtn Natl Park

14 replies

  1. NO! NO! Not fern lake/cub lake! Fretting all over again. Thanks for the pix – great shot except it’s fire in the park

    • Yes, this is not some remote part of the park where few people go. This is in the area where everybody goes. Hope they knock it down really fast. That’s right up where I usually go to see elk. I was there just a few weeks ago taking pictures.

      • That’s a big viewing area for elk about this time!
        Early snows bringing wildlife down earlier this year?
        Saw the space station ( and dragon) fly over the house tonight – so cool!

        • Yes it is. My two favorite viewing spots are Upper Beaver Meadows and Horseshoe Park. At least Horseshoe is still open. It might even have more elk now if the fire drove the elk in that direction. Of course, it will have more traffic too, with the other roads closed.

          • have to hope there will be enough pastures after the fire…some of the neighbors get annoyed with wandering wildlife if their own pastures are lean. (lots of elk and deer in downtown Estes this year probably)
            Appreciate the updates. Upper Beaver Meadows is a fav here, too

            • Haven’t heard about pastures burning. So far it’s in very steep wooded terrain up toward The Pool. So steep they can’t even get ground crews in there right now.

  2. I remember the last fires your reported on, PT. Devastating.

  3. That has to be one of the all-time great wildfire photos. The unpredictable way fires have occurred in recent years, I’m sure glad my days as a fire information officer are far behind me.


  1. More photos from Colorado’s Fern Lake Fire « Pied Type
  2. Mountain winds fan Fern Lake Fire « Pied Type

“I cannot be an optimist but I am a prisoner of hope.” ~ Cornel West

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