Law enforcement officers seized more than 4,000 marijuana plants from an illegal grow in the San Isabel National Forest on Tuesday, the Fremont County Sheriff's Office said.
Authorities found 4,231 marijuana plants, a handgun and cultivation equipment at the site. Four Mexican nationals were arrested on suspicion of federal narcotics violations.
The raid southeast of Salida involved the Sheriff's Office, U.S. Forest Service and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents.
The Sheriff's Office said illegal marijuana grows on National Forest land pose safety and the environmental problems. Booby traps, armed growers and toxic chemicals are commonly found in or near grows. Grows also can damage sensitive riparian areas and hurt or kill wildlife.
The Sheriff's Office advises people who find illegal grows to immediately leave the area the same way they entered and call 911.