From our campsite at East Fork campground, where some firefighters are staying, we can smell the West Fork fire, but we really haven’t seen it. Just smoke in our lungs, and a little in the valley in this picture on the way to the campground. West Fork Fire, smoke gets in your eyesAs we drove along newly reopened Highway 160 toward Pagosa Springs, signs forbade us from stopping—I suppose to keep rubberneckers from getting in the way of firefighting crews. West Fork fire, firefighters, Colorado wildfiresAnd here is the reason fires burn so hot these days—beetle kill. beetle kill trees, pine bark beetle, hot fires, Colorado wildfires, West Fork FireAlthough the hillsides look green in these pictures, there are dead trees everywhere—this particular hillside was not the worst I saw.

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