Crews battle challenges putting out Ptarmigan Fire in Silverthorne

Local News

SUMMIT COUNTY, Colo. (KDVR) — Day two of working on the Ptarmigan Fire in Silverthorne has been challenging, with rains and low hanging clouds. The fire has reached almost 100 acres and hundreds of people are still unable to return home.

The rain has grounded the four helicopters responsible for dumping water on the fire, but it didn’t stop the 100 firefighters working on the ground from tackling multiple missions.

“It’s a very dense forest and it’s treacherously littered with downfalls and dead standing trees. They are the types of trees that when they fall on firefighters, they kill them,” said Steve Lipsher with Summit County Fire. “We have to be very careful about going into those areas.”

Over 500 homes are under either evacuation or pre-evacuation orders and many are confused as to why they can’t return home.

“They ask a very valid question: We are standing in the rain right now, are you sure we can’t just get back in our homes? But what we are concerned about is that it won’t take much for conditions to turn right around and have active fire,” said David Boyd with the White River National Forest.

Arthur Hardin was one of the first people be evacuated and was given a few hours on Wednesday morning to return home and gather more essential items.

“Everything was fine, we came in and got some other things to pick up that we left before and checked on some pets,” said Hardin. “I don’t see us getting back until at least Saturday if that does happen.”

There have been no reports of structure damage yet. 

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