New fires erupt in 2 of Colo.'s most scenic areas


DENVER (AP) — Hot, dry weather and gusty winds are fueling two new wildfires in Colorado, prompting evacuations in some of the most scenic tourist areas in the state.

A wildfire reported west of Colorado Springs on Saturday afternoon has grown to an estimated 600 acres. The Gazette ( ) reports authorities were evacuating the exclusive Cedar Heights neighborhood, and a large plume of smoke could be seen near the Garden of the Gods nature center, which also was evacuated.

Meanwhile, Rocky Mountain National Park spokeswoman Kyle Patterson says a fire involving structures erupted near the Beaver Meadows Entrance on the north side of the park Saturday afternoon.

Ron Roth, a spokesman for the Rocky Mountain Area Coordination Center, says some evacuations are taking place and several aircraft are working the blaze.

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