Fire on the Mountain - Page 3
Waldo Canyon was not the only spot in the American West affected by wildfires this summer. The High Park Fire claimed numerous homes and acres of forest near Fort Collins, Colorado, and fires spread throughout the state and into neighboring Utah.
“Safety always has to come first. It is sometimes possible to modify a course to avoid a fire or an unsafe previously burned area, but there is no way to change a course to avoid dangerous air,” says Bruce Copeland, Director of the Logan Peak Trail Run in Logan, Utah. Logan Peak was run without incident on June 30, but Copeland says fires were visible from portions of the course the next day. “One fire was about two to three miles from the regular Logan Peak Trail Run course and about half a mile from one of our alternate snow and fire course routes. Fires not only affect our trails and the views from those trails—the smoke from the fires makes it dangerous to run and train.”
Still, Shafai says such inconveniences as canceled races or limited training options are minor inconveniences in the scheme of things. At the Summer Round-Up Trail Run in Colorado Springs July 8, he saw a friend and learned he had lost his home in the fire.
“But he still showed up to the race, only days after losing pretty much everything he owns,” Shafai says. “This gives me hope that such resilience will transfer into the broader community and we will soon see trail reconstruction and reforestation efforts designed to not just repair the damage, but perhaps make it better than it was before.”
“But in the meantime, it is sad to see such loss within our community and among our friends,” he says.