DENVER (CBS4) — One day after the U.S. Forest Service announced the unprecedented closure of forest land due to wildfire potential, the City of Denver closed all its mountain parks in Clear Creek County with the same goal of prevention.
All Denver Mountain Parks properties located in Clear Creek County are closed, including Echo Lake, Summit Lake, Hicks Mountain, Pence Mountain, Mt. Judge, Snyder Mountain and Forsberg Park.
The closure also includes the Beaver Brook Trail at Genesee Park in Jefferson County.
The Denver order will remain in effect until further notice. Denver Parks and Recreation will adjust restrictions as necessary.
Tuesday, national forest lands in five Colorado counties just west of the Front Range were closed to all activity. The closure took effect at midnight that night, hours after the announcement.
“It became clear to us that this was the path that we needed to take and we do not take it lightly,” said Reid Armstrong, a Public Affairs Specialist for the Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests. “We are in extreme drought conditions right now and what we need is enough snow and enough moisture to really change those small fine fuels.”
The Rocky Mountain Coordination Center says nearly 442,000 acres of land in Colorado and Wyoming are being affected by the wildfires.
The closure affects the state’s fall hunting season. Colorado Parks & Wildlife is offering some refunds.
A violation of the national forest closure carries a potential fine of up to $5,000 and six-months in prison.
For a listing of all Denver Mountain Parks, including maps and other information, please visit www.denvergov.org/mountainparks.