Fire Lives Here Too (though it’s not a great neighbor)

Why the Cameron Peak Fire doesn’t have to ruin your Ranch Vacation

Watchful but not Alarmed

Each summer, we face wildfires in the same way the Gulf coast confronts hurricanes: it’s an inescapable reality of living in paradise, one that comes with the territory, so be prepared. But unlike hurricanes, a wildfire burns an area once. So, on August 13, when the Cameron Peak Fire ignited about 23 miles SW of the ranch, we began following it closely, but without panic.

Here are a few facts:

  • The Forest Service has chosen so far to indirectly fight this fire – in short, to let it burn. Few structures and no neighborhoods are threatened. This is a national decision for all wildfires in the west.
  • This part of the forest is riddled with beetle kill, thousands of acres dead-standing and ready to burn. This moment turns out to be a good time to spend this fuel – winds are variable in direction and not strong.
  • The fire is almost as close to Walden as it is to the ranch. Walden, if you don’t know, is 2 hours away in the county next door, with a mountain range between us.
  • The local Forest Service Fire Team is building breaks between the fire and Red Feather Lakes, many miles from the burn zone in case the fire does change direction. This precaution allows the firefighters to confront the fire on their terms, and let it burn where it should.
  • Red Feather Lakes is hopping! Campgrounds are full, and even allowing campfires within fire rings on improved sites. The fishing lakes are all open and busy.
  • The smoke is heavier in Ft Collins and downwind to the south. The air at the ranch is remarkably clear.

So, with three weeks left in our Dude Ranch Summer season, the few rooms we have left are going fast. Click here to go to our reservation page.

Reach us today at 970-224-1222

Cameron Peak Fire Information

Fire size on August 19: 15,738 acres

Containment: 0%

Location: 25 miles east of Walden, CO and 15 miles southwest of Red Feather Lakes

Personnel: 502, with additional resources ordered

Best Webpage for Information: 


7-day Weather Forecast

Day High Precip Wind
Wed Aug 19 79° 20% NNW 10 mph
Thurs Aug 20 77° 40% NW 11 mph
Fri Aug 21 81° 0% NW 11 mph
Sat Aug 22 83° 10% NNW 8 mph
Sun Aug 23 82° 20% W 8 mph
Mon Aug 24 82° 20% NNW 8 mph
Tues Aug 25 80° 20% NW 9 mph


Did you know?

Cameron Pass was officially named in 1870 to honor Robert Alexander Cameron (1828-1894), Union General who was instrumental in establishing the towns of Greeley, Colorado Springs and Ft Collins.

The pass reaches an elevation of 10,276 feet, bordered on the south by the Never Summer Mountains and Rocky Mountain National Park, and on the north by the Medicine Bow Range.