DENVER (KDVR) — A man from Denver came across an old land mine while hiking near Camp Hale last month, the Eagle County Sheriff’s Office said Tuesday.
He was hiking in a nearby forest on July 20 when the sheriff’s office said he found what he believed to be an old training land mine. The hiker kept his distance, took photos of the land mine and documented its location.
The Explosive Ordinance Disposal Team from Fort Carson found the device and it was destroyed, according to the sheriff’s office.
Even training land mines can be dangerous
The disposal team said even training devices like the one found that day can be dangerous and, if tampered with, could cause serious injury or death.
The land mine was left behind from training practices for the U.S. Army’s 10th Mountain Division, according to the sheriff’s office.
Camp Hale was home to thousands of troops in the 10th Mountain Division during World War II. There, soldiers trained to ski and navigate high country to help them fight.
It has been 80 years since then, long enough that the camp is now officially recognized as a national monument. However, the sheriff’s office warned hikers in the area to be aware of their surroundings.
The U.S. Army made a great effort to sweep and clear the area of danger, but the sheriff’s office said it has received multiple reports of leftover equipment there over the years.
If you ever see a suspicious item in the area, you are urged to document the location and contact the Eagle County Sheriff’s Office as soon as possible.