Letter: Put out your campfires | AspenTimes.com

Letter: Put out your campfires

In the past two weeks, I have encountered two campfires that were not properly extinguished, and I want to make sure the public is aware of the disastrous consequences these could have caused.

Two weeks ago, my wife and I drove up the road above Lenado and stopped at the overlook at the top of the hill to check out the view and go for a short hike on the Hannan Creek Trail. At the overlook, we discovered the remains of an abandoned campfire in a rock ring that was still smoldering. We extinguished it with water and dirt, but the fact that someone had left it in that condition was very disturbing.

Then this past Sunday, we were driving on the 509 road on the back side of Basalt Mountain when we smelled smoke. We stopped to investigate and discovered another abandoned fire at a campsite in a rock ring that was still smoking. Again we extinguished it with water and dirt. When we got home and turned on the TV news, we heard about the forest fire in Nederland that was caused by an improperly extinguished campfire that has now consumed at least eight homes.

The same thing easily could have happened here. Both of these days were extremely hot and windy, and these fires could very well have caused major forest fires.

There is absolutely no excuse to leave a campfire that is not completely extinguished, especially in the case of the second campfire, where there was a stream only a few yards away that would have provided an ample source of water to pour on the fire if only the campers hadn’t been so lazy.

Please, all campers, be absolutely sure your fires are completely out before you leave your campsites. We don’t want our home or our neighbors’ homes to be the next wildfire casualties.

Mike Petrie


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