Public Outreach & Events

PRESS RELEASE: USDA Forest Service - Potential Opportunity to Initiate Hunter Creek Prescribed Fire

Aspen, Colo. – May 12, 2016 – Based on current conditions and forecasts, the White River National Forest and partners in the Hunter-Smuggler Cooperative Plan see a potential opportunity to initiate the Hunter Creek Prescribed Fire this weekend. The Hunter Creek Prescribed Fire is part of the larger Hunter-Smuggler Cooperative Plan which seeks to improve wildlife habitat, forest health and recreation in the Hunter Creek Valley and surrounding landscape. The fire will target 1,100 acres of decadent Gambel oak and mountain shrubs on the White River National Forest and adjacent Pitkin County Open Space lands in an effort to rejuvenate forage for wildlife and to reduce fuels in this buffer zone between the Hunter-Fryingpan Wilderness and the city of Aspen. Crews plan to ignite 60-100 acres by hand, and to follow up with aerial ignition by helicopter if conditions permit. Please note that the unauthorized use of unmanned aircraft or drones over the area endangers the lives of firefighters and pilots. The burn may take place over several days. Those in the area should expect to see large volumes of smoke, and possibly flames. Please do not call 911 or emergency services. The Forest Service has obtained smoke permits from the Colorado State Air Pollution Control Division which identify atmospheric conditions under which burns may be implemented for these projects. While smoke may be visible at times, most of the smoke will lift and dissipate during the warmest part of the day.  Some smoke may linger over the area and in drainages as temperatures drop during the evening. Prescribed fire smoke may affect your health. For more information, see and-health." Please refrain from recreating in the Hunter Creek area until the project is complete and officials have declared the area safe. Updates will be posted on the White River National Forest Twitter account, @WhiteRiverNews. Pitkin, Garfield and Eagle Counties will also be disseminating information through their alert systems. For information on the benefits of prescribed fire, please visit, or for general information, contact the Sopris Ranger District at 970-963- 2266 or the Aspen Fire Department at 970- 925-5532.LEARN MORE


The U.S. Forest Service is planning to conduct a prescribed fire in the Hunter Creek Valley the Spring of 2016 to improve wildfire habitat and decrease the risk of catastrophic wildfire. The project is part of the Hunter-Smuggler Cooperative Plan, which was finalized in early 2014 and seeks to improve forest resiliency and recreation in the Hunter Creek Valley and surrounding landscape. For more information, please see video below for more information.


PRESS RELEASE: Monitored Alarm Letter

Aspen, Colorado – April 29, 2016 – Earlier this month, there was a notice sent to a number of local property owners on Aspen Fire Protection District's letterhead that also appeared to have been signed by Aspen Fire Protection District’s Fire Marshal. If you received one of these notices regarding alarm system maintenance in the mail, or elsewhere, please be aware that this letter was in fact not generated nor authorized by The Aspen Fire Protection District, and did not contain accurate information. Understandably, the content and nature of this falsified letter have caused a great deal of concern among many homeowners and others within our fire district. If you have any questions regarding response procedures as they pertain to monitored alarm life safety devices, or any other questions or concerns, please feel free to call the Aspen Fire Protection District office at (970) 925-5532 or stop by our offices at 420 E. Hopkins Avenue. To view a letter from the Fire Marshal regarding Aspen Fire’s alarm policy and procedures, please go to our website at and click on the "Public Information and Events" tab. To all those within the Aspen Fire Protection District, and the many of you who have called or stopped by already regarding this unfortunate issue, please rest assured that the Aspen Fire Protection District staff and dozens of Aspen Volunteer Firefighters are always here to respond and assist you in your time of need. Rick Balentine Fire Chief/CEO Tel: 970.925.5532 LEARN MORE


Did you know your monitored fire alarm system needs to be inspected on an annual basis? Please read Letter From Fire Marshal