Forest Service battles small fire on Vasquez Ridge near Winter Park

A U.S. Forest Service helicopter drops water on a wildfire on Vasquez Mountain near Winter Park on Tuesday afternoon, July 22. No structures are threatened by the fire, which was reported to be 50-by-100 feet.
Byron Hetzler/ | Sky-Hi News

Firefighters with the U.S. Forest Service declared a small fire on Vasquez Ridge contained Tuesday evening.

The fire, located up a dirt road near the southwest end of Little Vasquez Road, grew to be a bit more than 50 feet by 100 feet in size, said Reid Armstrong, spokeswoman for the U.S. Forest Service’s Suphur Ranger District. The USFS used helicopter support to douse the fire because it was so inaccessible, Armstrong said.

Officials believe the fire was human caused, though the USFS is still investigating, Armstrong said.

No structures were damaged during the fire, which occurred in an area where there had been a hazardous fuels reduction project completed in 2012, which Armstrong said prevented the fire from getting out of hand.

Though the fire danger was moderate on Tuesday, Armstrong said early rains have fostered lots of light brush, and a drying trend over the last two weeks has seen much of that light fuel begin to dry.

“There is potential out there for a fire to get going, whether it’s a lightning strike or it’s human caused,” Armstrong said. “And we’ve had examples of both in the last few days.”

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