Frequent rains cushion moisture levels in Summit County; still no fire restrictions

Rain, sun and rainbows grace Dillon Reservoir on the afternoon of Saturday June 25, 2022.
Eiliana Wright/Summit Daily News archive

Even though Summit County Sheriff Jaime FitzSimons does not recommend fire restrictions in Summit County through July 4, he urges folks to “play responsibly” through the holiday.

At Tuesday’s Board of County Commissioners work session, FitzSimons said that with the frequent rains and with advice from the Upper Colorado River Interagency Fire Management Unit, fire restrictions are not necessary at this time. 

“None of the fire chiefs or myself could remember the last time Summit County was not in fire restrictions on July Fourth,” FitzSimons said. However, he added that it’s possible there may even be rain during celebrations. 

The six to 10 day outlook predicts temperatures to be slightly above average and precipitation to also be above average, with the next monsoonal pulse arriving by Thursday. Rain is expected at high elevations, which “should do well for us,” FitzSimons said.  The three-month outlook calls for above-average temperatures and below-average precipitation. 

FitzSimons said some live fuel moisture levels in the county have rebounded. He added that, according to the Upper Colorado River Interagency Fire Management Unit, this is “an unprecedented July rebound.” Energy release components have also dropped and are “well below” the 90th percentile. 

Even though there are no fire restrictions, Summit County Commissioner Tamara Pogue urged residents and visitors to still exercise caution.

“I do think it’s important — given how many people tend to come to Summit County for July Fourth — that we encourage folks to make good decisions regardless of the fire restrictions,” she said. 

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