Stop fires before they start

I traveled to Snowmass Aug. 14 to meet my son and his family from Kansas City for a week in the mountains. This was during the first few days of the Glenwood Canyon fire, and we both had to reroute to get to Snowmass. Despite the fires and a little ash on the windshields, we had a good visit. We took a hike to Weller Lake, up Highway 82 a few miles east of Aspen.

Today, remembering the Colorado fires, and reading about the California fires, I write about what caught my attention on this hike. The forest floor was densely piled with fuel (read large quantity of dead downed trees and limbs). I am sure the experts in the area must already recognize towns in the area are at high risk for conflagration. The people of Basalt were fortunate to have dodged a bullet a couple of years ago. We very much enjoy summer and winter visits to this area and hope that for the sake of the residents and future visitors, a way can be found to mitigate this risky condition and avoid tragic disaster like now occurring in California.

Chuck Hiller

Little Rock, Arkansas