Public warned to stay out of Lake Christine Fire burn area | AspenTimes.com

Public warned to stay out of Lake Christine Fire burn area

Staff report

The Lake Christine Fire hollowed up numerous trees along Basalt Mountain's trails and roads. Those dead trees, called snags, pose a threat to the public until they are cleared out. The public is being warned to respect a closure of the burn area.

The incident management team for the Lake Christine Fire warned the public Monday to stay out of the burn area even though the blaze is winding down.

The incident commander "emphasized the importance of residents' respect of the fire area restrictions as many hikers, bikers, joggers and other curiosity seekers keep entering the closure area," the statement said.

The White River National Forest has issued a closure notice for the entire burn area, which affects all roads and trails on Basalt Mountain.

The fire remains at 12,588 acres though pockets of unburned trees and vegetation within the burn area flare up occasionally. It is still at 90 percent contained as the firefighting enters its seventh week of operations and five transitions of incident command teams.

Even though the fire is dying out, the burn area remains dangerous because of snags — dead trees or weakened live trees close to roads and trails that will likely topple.

"Yesterday afternoon's gusty winds caused many snags to topple and firefighters described the sounds and situation as 'eerie,'" said the statement released Monday.

Recommended Stories For You

There were 26 personnel involved in the firefighting effort Monday. They continue to seek and snuff hotspots on the perimeter. The command team will not issue any further public statements nor Facebook posts. Any information will come from the Aspen-Sopris Ranger District, as needed.