The Tobin fire that erupted Tuesday near the entrance to Great Sand Dunes National Park and Reserve has been quickly brought under control, officials said, with containment at 97% Thursday.
The cause of the 15-acre fire has not been determined but mopping up has been turned over to local fire departments. The fire was one of several small blazes this week in Colorado, which so far has been spared large wildfires after massive snowfall throughout the winter and a wet, cool spring. The outlook for the fire season could quickly change, however, as temperatures heat up and dry out fuels that sprouted during the wet spring.
One of those fires broke out Thursday near the Mount Herman trailhead west of Monument, sending a plume of smoke skyward before it was quickly doused, Monument fire officials said Thursday.
Monument fire officials said a quick reaction to the 5 a.m. blaze kept it from growing beyond a half acre.
The area is west of the land where the 18,000-acre Black Forest fire burned in 2013 and north of the 2012 Waldo Canyon fire burn scar.
The smoke from the fire may have exacerbated conditions that already have triggered an air quality alert for El Paso County. The Weather Service said high ozone levels in the county could impact those with lung conditions such as asthma. Two other wildfires are still burning in the state:
Canyonlands fire: As of Wednesday evening, the blaze had reached 40 acres about 9 miles west of Cañon City. No structures are threatened at this time as the fire remains on Bureau of Land Management lands. Three hand crews joined the effort Thursday.
Doe Canyon fire: Containment is still being reported at 85% and has reached about 2,560 acres about 80 miles west of Durango. The fire was started by a lightning strike and is projected to be contained by Monday.
Contact Tom Roeder: 636-0240 Twitter: @xroederx