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Wet Weather Dampens Colorado Fire Season, For Now

Nathan Heffel
The Reservoir Road Fire outside Loveland, Colorado in 2012.

Colorado’s wildfire season has been quiet so far, only 3,400 acres have burned across the state. That’s a far cry from the well over 100,000 acres blackened by July 2013.

Ample wet weather has kept the state pretty free of large wildfires, despite July being the height of wildfire season. Tim Mathewson, a fire meteorologist with the Rocky Mountain Area Coordination Center based in Lakewood, Colorado, said areas of Northern Colorado should expect below normal wildfire potential.

“That’s what we’re seeing now, more wet thunderstorm activity, and that trend is forecast to continue for much of the week, and usually through mid-August,” Mathewson said.

The rest of the state should see a normal potential for wildfire, including areas in Southern Colorado that have seen recent extreme drought conditions. However, there’s still a risk large fires could erupt.

“Though mid-July is the peak of our fire season for Colorado, we still can have large fires into August and even early September,” Mathewson said. “Heck we’ve seen large fires along the Front Range into the end of October, so we still have that potential as we get into the winter season.”

During a typical fire season, which stretches from May through September, Colorado averages around 100,000 acres burned. You can read the latest wildland fire potential outlook here.

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