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Fire captain says Palmer Lake primed for destructive wildfire, taking steps to reduce risk

Palmer Lake fire danger

PALMER LAKE, Colo. - Palmer Lake could be one of the scariest spots in southern Colorado when wildfire season starts.

Palmer Lake Fire Capt. Tyler Ruona said the town isn't ready for a wildfire because it hasn't done enough fire mitigation to prevent it.

Firefighters keep a close eye on three spots in Palmer Lake: the town's reservoir trail, Glen Park and Limbaugh Canyon.

The Palmer Lake Reservoir Trail and Limbaugh Canyon are two danger spots.

"They have a lot of the same things, the fuel load, the patterns in the topography and lack of safety zones make it a target," Ruona said. He also said that people who use these areas are sometimes careless with fire, which increases the danger.

Ruona said Glen Park, in Palmer Lake, is what proper fire mitigation looks like.

"It's clean on the ground, not a lot of duff, not a lot of fuel --  the lighter fuels have all been eliminated," he said.

Ruona also said there is enough space at the park for firefighters to contain the flames.

Ruona said the goal isn't to cut down all of the trees in Palmer Lake, but to give fire crews a fighting chance to battle the flames.

"It's not about getting rid of all the trees, it's not about flattening it out and making it into the suburbs it's just cleaning it up and making it safer," he said.

Ruona said it will be years before most of Palmer Lake looks like Glen Park, but the town is off to a good start.

If you need advice on how to fire mitigate your home, call your local fire department.

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