Local News Briefs | PostIndependent.com

Local News Briefs

Post Independent
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado

RIFLE, Colorado – Wind from storm fronts in recent days has caused the Meadow Creek Fire burning northeast of here to increase to 125 acres and caused more smoke to be visible from the Colorado River Valley.

“While smoke from this fire has been more visible in the last couple of days, I want to stress that this fire is burning as we expected,” Upper Colorado River (UCR) Central Zone Fire Management Officer Russell Long said in a press release. “Public and firefighter safety is our number one concern and we continue to manage this fire with that upmost in our minds.”

Residents concerned about the impacts of the fire may attend a community meeting at 6 p.m. tonight at Coal Ridge High School, 35947 Highway 6 between Silt and New Castle. Local and federal agency officials will be available to answer questions.

The fire is located in steep, rugged terrain 13 miles northeast of Rifle. Eight fire personnel from the Uniweep Fire Module out of Grand Junction are monitoring the fire daily, and when necessary, a helicopter is dispatched to control the size of the fire perimeter with water from bucket drops.

“This fire could possibly burn throughout the summer,” said Scott Fitzwilliams, White River National Forest Supervisor.

The fire is located within a proposed Research Natural Area in the White River National Forest’s resource management plan. Prescribed fires have previously been used in this area for wildlife enhancement.

The Meadow Creek Fire began from a lightning strike on June 26. Information and updates about fire activity are available online at http://www.inciweb.org/.

A court hearing where actor Charlie Sheen was expected to plead guilty to a charge stemming from a Christmas Day dispute with his wife has been postponed.

Court officials say the hearing set for Monday has been rescheduled for Aug. 2. Yale Galanter, one of Sheen’s attorneys, says the defense needs more time to work out details of an agreement that calls for Sheen to plead guilty to misdemeanor assault in exchange for prosecutors dropping more serious charges.

Galanter previously said the agreement calls for Sheen to serve 30 days in jail.

Sheen, star of “Two and a Half Men” on CBS, is charged with felony menacing, criminal mischief and assault against his wife, Brooke Mueller Sheen. (AP)

Proposed improvements to the Rio Grande Trail in Woody Creek will be the focus of a public open house at the Woody Creek Community Center on Wednesday, July 14.

Pitkin County Open Space and Trails officials will discuss the improvements and take public input from 5 to 6:30 p.m., followed by a walk-through of the trail, led by Open Space staff, at 6:30 p.m.

“We’re ready to show the public how we’ve incorporated input from user groups into trail design and enhancements,” said Gary Tennenbaum, Open Space and Trails stewardship and trails manager, in a press release.

Open Space and Trails has proposed a dual-surface trail in the section between Upper Woody Creek Road and the trail’s intersection with McLain Flats Road. There will be pavement for bicyclists and a soft-surface trail for equestrians and other users. The two surfaces will be on separate grades for about 60 percent of the 2.5-mile section of the Rio Grande Trail in the Woody Creek area.

“Cyclists and equestrians have expressed interest in having a separation between their uses. We have been able to come up with a trail design that creates a buffer between them on the majority of this section of trail,” said Lindsey Utter, Open Space recreation planner, in the press release.

After the open house, Open Space officials will meet with the full Woody Creek Caucus and take comments to the Open Space and Trails Board in early August, when a decision is expected to be made to begin improvements. Construction could get under way as early as this fall.

A map of the trail and proposed improvements will be posted at the Woody Creek Community Center until Aug. 1.

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