Report: 450-Acre Colorado Wildfire Human Caused

The fast-moving Springer Fire burned 450 acres in Park County by Sunday night.


PARK COUNTY, Colo. -- The fast-moving Springer Fire burned 450 acres in Park County by Sunday night.

Authorities ordered evacuations for the Eleven Mile Canyon Recreation Area, said Ralph Bellah, spokesman for the Pike National Forest.

The Park County Sheriff's Office issued mandatory evacuations for the Wagon Tongue subdivision, Echo Valley subdivision, Circle C Ranch, Beaver Ranch, County Road 98 and Park County Road 403.

Teller County officials issued a voluntary evacuation notice for Wilson Lakes subdivision, Forest Glen subdivision and Blue Mountain. The Red Cross has opened to evacuation shelters at Woodland Park High School and Summit Elementary School in Divide.

Numerous homes and cabins are threatened, Bellah said.

An estimated 150 to 200 residences are near the fire, Forest Service officials said.

On Sunday night, residents were talking about two people who had been shooting explosive targets on the property of one of the ranches in the area.

Early Monday morning, a law enforcement source working the fire confirmed with 7NEWS that "shooting explosive targets" was the cause of the fire. Though, U.S. Forest Service spokesman Greg Goodland also said there was a lot of lightning in the area on Saturday.

The cause of still under investigation according to Goodland.

First reported about 12 p.m. Sunday, the fire was burning in Ponderosa pine and grass five miles southwest of Lake George and two miles north of Eleven Mile Reservoir in the Pike National Forest, Bellah said. Its smoke was visible in the metro Denver area.

Fire officials responded with an aggressive ground-and-air attack.

About 150 firefighters and five engines are fighting the fire along with several helicopters, five heavy air tankers and five single-engine air tankers, fire officials said.

A red flag warning for high fire danger will continue Monday, with temperatures in the mid-80s and winds gusting up to 30 mph, according to the National Weather Service.

Jon Dale said he shot the below YouTube video while he and friends were riding motorcycles in Eleven Mile Canyon midday Sunday. They saw a little smoke rising from another valley, rode toward it and encountered billowing smoke and huge flames.

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