Forest Service: Too soon to know whether Hanging Lake was damaged in Grizzly Creek Fire

Child dies at Hanging Lake in Garfield County
Posted at 3:30 PM, Aug 14, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-14 17:33:30-04

GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colo. – The Grizzly Creek Fire burned through the Hanging Lake area Thursday, but the U.S. Forest Service said Friday it is too early to know the extent to which the area was affected by the fire.

The White River National Forest said Friday afternoon that crews plan to fly over the area as soon as the smoke allows for a flight to assess the possible damage.

“It is not safe to have anyone hike into the lake through the burned area to assess from the ground right now,” the National Forest wrote in a Facebook post.

Hanging Lake is among the most-photographed hiking destinations in all of Colorado.

The city of Glenwood Springs said Friday that the Hanging Lake call center has “been inundated with the volume of calls” and asked for patience for the staff as they try to sort out reservations and the area’s closure because of the wildfire.

The city said that people with existing reservations could soon see other options.

“For existing reservations, there will be opportunities for visitors who may wish to donate their reservation fee to a restoration fund for Hanging Lake,” the city said.

The Grizzly Creek Fire had burned 14,663 acres as of Friday morning. Officials plan to host another Facebook Live community meeting Friday at 6 on the fire’s Facebook page.