Sylvan Fire closure area reduced by Forest Service
Residents, visitors still urged to take care when in the area
The White River National Forest has reduced the Sylvan Fire Forest Closure as fire and firefighting activity lessens, but officials stress the need for the public to drive slowly and respect the continuing closures.
As of Wednesday afternoon, the fire had burned 3,792 acres – just less than 6 square miles. The fire was 68% contained, and 95 firefighters continued to work on the blaze. As of Wednesday afternoon, the fire’s behavior was described as “creeping” and “smoldering.”
The areas remaining in the closure include the areas within the Sylvan Fire perimeter and several roads and trails leading into the burned area.
The specific roads continuing to be closed are National Forest System Road 414 (Brush-Gypsum Road), NFSR 417 (Leeman Gulch), NFSR 431 (Powerline Road) and NFSR 431.1 N (Crooked Creek Pass Spur). The trails still closed are the Mount Thomas Trail (1870) from the intersection with Red Creek Trail (1868) east to the trailhead intersection with NFSR 431.1N, and Antones Trail (1871).
Areas now open include NFSR 400 (Eagle-Thomasville), NFSR 416 (Gypsum Creek) and the Hardscrabble/Seven Hermits trail system.
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“Please be aware that firefighters may be operating on or near roads around the Sylvan Fire that are also now open to the public,” said Eagle-Holy Cross District Ranger Leanne Veldhuis. “Firefighters, trucks and heavy equipment may be entering roads and may be parked on or near roads. Please respect the safety of firefighters and drive slowly.”
East Brush Creek and the Yeoman and Fulford areas were not part of the previous closure and continue to be open. The trails east of NFSR 415 continue to be open (Nolan Lake, New York Mountain and Squaw Creek).
“The burned areas remain closed,” Veldhuis said. “Firefighters continue to work in these areas, and it is not safe for the public to enter them. Areas may still see active fire behavior, and there are fire-weakened trees and unstable soils.”
Sylvan Lake Campground is managed by Colorado Parks and Wildlife. It remains closed because it continues to be used as a base for the fire team and aerial operations, but is not part of this specific National Forest System lands closure.