Forest Service lifts many closures associated with wildfires | SteamboatToday.com

Forest Service lifts many closures associated with wildfires

The Silver Creek Fire burns Sept. 12 behind the the Green Creek burn scar. (Matt Stensland/file)

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — The U.S. Forest Service has lifted many of the closures associated with the wildfires burning in area forests.

Forest Service Road 100, also known as Buffalo Park Road on Rabbit Ears Pass, remains closed because there are still firefighters working in the area.

"Along with the fact there are still a few places where there's some smoke being seen, there is still some heavy machinery in the area continuing to work the fire scene," Grand County Sheriff's Office spokesman Christian Hornbaker wrote to residents in the area of Gore Pass. "They're out there repairing what was touched by the fire crews during the fight. They're basically making the area safe again by removing debris, weakened trees (that they can see), covering up dozer lines and other methods to get you back in the area as quickly as possible."

The closures had been in place because of the Silver Creek and Ryan fires.

The 20,120-acre Silver Creek Fire has been burning on the Routt and Arapaho national forests in Routt and Grand counties.

The fire was started by lightning and discovered July 19.

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The 28,585-acre Ryan Fire was discovered Sept. 15 and has been burning in the Medicine Bow and Routt national forests in Jackson County. The fire also spread north into Wyoming.

The Ryan Fire was started by a campfire.

Neither fire has been declared fully contained or officially out.

Because of snow cover, the time of year, decreased fire personnel in the area and a lack of fire activity in the area, the Forest Service felt comfortable lifting the closures.

The Forest Service is urging people to use caution near the fires because there are weakened trees that could easily fall, especially in high winds.

To reach Matt Stensland, call 970-871-4247, email mstensland@SteamboatPilot.com or follow him on Twitter @SBTStensland.

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