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Fire closes Rocky Mountain National Park

In recent days, much of the smoke in Greater Denver has been from the  East Troublesome Fire (credit: Michael Smith in Westminster)

Late yesterday the East Troublesome fire near Granby, Colo., blew up and raced east at the rate of 100 acres per minute. That’s 100,000 acres since yesterday. Evacuation orders for the Grand Lake area were urgent — “IF YOU LIVE IN THIS AREA, EVACUATE IMMEDIATELY!!” — and the main highway to the south was made one-way only, with both lanes heading south. For a time Trail Ridge Road was open to the east, although nighttime visibility with smoke made it a harrowing drive. That route was soon blocked by fallen trees, and early this morning the entire park was closed. Air quality in the park has been rated “hazardous”:

View from the Alpine Visitor Center on Trail Ridge Road, looking down the valley toward Estes Park

With Colorado’s firefighting resources already stretched thin, the outlook for this fire — and the park — is grim.

8 Comments »

    • I’m beside myself thinking that the town and park I’ve loved all my life could be incinerated in the next couple of days. I hope at least that everyone gets out safely.

"Nothing is more dangerous than ignorance and intolerance armed with power." ~ Voltaire

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