Choppers, crews snuff midvalley fire |

Choppers, crews snuff midvalley fire

Mark Vonderhaar/Special to The Aspen TimesA helicopter from the Upper Colorado River Interagency Fire Management Unit

CARBONDALE – A quick response by federal and local firefighters prevented a wildfire from spreading beyond a couple of acres and torching a rural residential area between Cattle Creek and Crystal Springs roads, officials said Sunday.

The fire broke out at around 4:30 p.m. near mile marker 5 on Cattle Creek Road. No houses or other structures burned although some were threatened, according to a firefighter.

Two helicopters from the Upper Colorado River Interagency Fire Management Unit, including one that’s known as a sky crane, were called to the scene by the Carbondale Fire Department. A hotshot crew that was in western Colorado was also dispatched to the site. The Basalt fire department also assisted.

The helicopters dipped into local streams and ponds to collect water to dump on the blaze, according to witness Mark Vonderhaar, who lives near the area. Flames appeared to be at least 40 feet high at one point, with thick black smoke rolling from the area, he said.

Firefighters who responded to the scene said fireworks were the suspected cause of the blaze.

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