Crews fight wildfire near Cottonwood Pass |

Crews fight wildfire near Cottonwood Pass

BASALT – Fire crews were summoned to the Cottonwood Pass area Friday afternoon for a wildfire that officials believe was sparked by a lightning strike.

Shortly after 6 p.m. Friday, crews were back on the fire line after withdrawing during a lightning storm, according to Jerry Peetz, deputy chief of the Basalt Rural and Fire Protection District.

Firefighters were expected to remain on the scene, aggressively attacking the fire into the evening.

The Basalt Fire Department received multiple reports of smoke in the vicinity of the pass at about 2:20 p.m. Patrols from both Basalt and Carbondale responded and were able to drive to the blaze, which was burning on private property. The fire was one-half to one acre in size, producing two-foot flames in brush and aspen trees, the department reported.

By Friday evening, 17 firefighters were attacking the fire, including personnel from Basalt, Carbondale and the Upper Colorado River Fire Agency. Five engines and a water tender were also on hand.

A helicopter was summoned and was able to pinpoint the blaze, but was unable to provide water drops because there were power lines in the area, according to the Basalt department.

The fire was burning about one mile southwest of Cottonwood Pass, the department said.

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