A fire broke out eight miles south of Rifle over the weekend. The Cache Creek fire is burning on steep terrain in the White River National Forest. A federal “Type 2” Team will take command of the incident this week. The fire is primarily burning heavy, dead fuels and spreading to the east.
“It’s heavy timber so the trees are close together and they are big trees,” explained Kate Jerman, public affairs officer for the Forest Service.
“There are also snags, when a tree has partially fallen and caught up on another tree and so there is high potential for those snags to come down,” she said.
According to Jerman, firefighter safety is a primary concern and the inaccessible terrain makes it difficult to find a safe anchor point from which to fight the fire.
Smoke can be seen from I-70, between Parachute and New Castle. Fire managers are working to determine if lighting struck the area during the weekend’s heavy storms. As of Monday evening, no evacuations or forest closures are in place.