Image copyright AFP Image caption A wildfire in Colorado has already burned about 500 acres in the mountains above the resort town of Silverthorne
A wildfire in the Rocky Mountains that has already burned about 500 acres of forest has prompted evacuations in the resort town of Silverthorne, in Colorado.
Three wildfires have been raging in the region since Tuesday, and a man is in custody after he allegedly set a fire in Boulder County on Monday.
Denver fire chief Miles De Young said there were several thousand acres covered in smoke in northern Colorado.
It follows a wildfire in nearby Glacier National Park last month.
There was no immediate word on how big the Silverthorne blaze was or its cause. About 3,600 people live in the town, located in Rocky Mountain National Park.
On Tuesday, three firefighting helicopters were spraying water from the air.
A man identified as 31-year-old Eric Voorhees set a fire Monday at a hiking trail in the Rocky Mountain National Park.
The blaze, believed to have been lit deliberately, prompted visitors to be evacuated from cabins on Monday.
Armando Balderrama, director of parks and recreation, said the fire jumped the lake and was expanding on a path to Longs Peak.
Officials are asking people to not to leave their cars parked at a staging area at the top of the popular trail to prepare to evacuate in case they can’t get out.
The fire prompted fire officials to evacuate visitors to cabins on the trail, and to park vehicles on a grassy area and let people retrieve their own vehicles.
Gannett Colorado media reported that 500 acres had been burned.
Please be advised that the #Silverthorne fire is causing very high smoke impacts in the area. Smoke is from multiple blazes. Please go to www.smokemonitor.info for a quick scan. You can also contact me @MDTV! — Colorado Air Monitoring (@COAirMonitor) February 6, 2019
The National Park Service announced on Tuesday that open-space forest fires have burned more than 17,000 acres in two counties outside the park.
The National Park Service told the Denver Post that the fires are all affecting the popular mountain and historic areas.
Read more in the News Guide