Jul 7, 2010 10:06 AM by Bea Karnes, News First 5

Wildfire flares-up near Sand Dunes

A wildfire that's been burning near the Great Sand Dunes National Park since last month flared up Tuesday when thunderstorms moved through the area.

Called the Medano Fire, the blaze has now consumed more than 6,200 acres. More than 200 firefighters have made a line all the way around the fire, but unburned trees within the fire line continue to go up in flames. Winds associated with yesterday's storms fueled the fire, sending a thick column of smoke into the air.

The Medano Fire is burning in the San Isabel National Forest and Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve. Both the park and forest land remain open to visitors. Trails and roads in the immediate vicinity of the fire are closed.

The fire was started by lightning.


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