Lightning pummels Northwest Colorado

RBC I Thunderstorms moved through Colorado Monday evening and delivered more than 5,000 lightning strikes to Rio Blanco, Moffat, Routt, Jackson and Grand counties. Varying amounts of rain accompanied the storm minimizing the number of new fires in the area.
Engine crews responded to five new fires Tuesday. Lightning is suspected to be the cause with three of the incidents now contained. One fire is in Rio Blanco County, four are in Moffat County and one is on the Routt National Forest in Routt County. The Skillet Fire, north of Mosquito Lake on the Routt NF, will be managed for benefits to the environment. All the incidents reported Tuesday were one-tenth acre. Engine crews also checked on three incidents from earlier.
The Ladore Fire received one-quarter inch of rain Tuesday which has moderated fire activity. Even with the rain, hot spots remain and the six-person hand crew is building fireline to keep the fire from moving further onto the Dinosaur National Monument. It’s estimated to be 320 acres.
The Ladore Fire is two miles northwest of the Gates of Lodore in the Bureau of Land Management Diamond Breaks Wilderness Study Area and 32 miles northeast of Vernal, Utah. It’s in a very remote, inaccessible location. Fire officials are allowing this fire to play its natural role in the environment which will encourage regeneration of grasses and shrubs while cleaning up dead and down vegetative materials. A six-person fire crew is monitoring and observing fire behavior in the event any suppression actions become necessary. Lightning ignited this incident and it was reported August 26.
No structures are threatened and no injuries have been reported.