DENVER (KDVR) — As search and rescue teams continue to worry about the threat of avalanche danger in Colorado’s high country, emergency responders tell the FOX31 Problem Solvers they are already looking ahead to another threat: wildfire season.
Despite receiving a few quick snowstorms recently, it was not enough moisture to get Colorado out of high drought levels.
The entire state is currently dealing with moderate to exceptional drought, according to the latest drought monitor map of Colorado.
Exceptional drought is considered the worst.
The southwest corner of Colorado is one of those areas dealing with exceptional drought.
According to officials in San Juan County, the San Juan Mountains are currently below average (when it comes to snowpack levels).
The last blast of wintry weather only brought a foot to a foot and a half of snow to the area last week.
“So what is concerning for our community is the low snowpack and the storms that are only bringing in only a foot or so into the San Juans,” said DeAnne Gallegos, spokesperson for San Juan County.
Given the lack of moisture, officials are concerned about a repeat of what we saw in 2020, when catastrophic wildfires burned more than 625,000 acres of land.
“Quite frankly, our community is already focused on wildfires and wildfire season for this Summer. Because what we did see during COVID was a sharp increase in campers and in folks just wanting to be in the backcountry,” Gallegos said.
For a look at the latest drought monitor map for Colorado, click here.