Latest News – June 22

Hazy Skies Due To Nearby Wildfires

Hazy Morning_leadville

The haze that started to creep in last night under the cover of darkness brought a blood red sunrise over Leadville Today​. The smoke from active wildfires in southwestern Colorado and southwestern Utah continues to drift into Lake County skies. Active wildfires are burning in San Miguel and Montrose counties near Redvale. Also, a 10,950-acre wildfire named the Brian Head Fire continues in southwestern Utah. Keep these communities in your thoughts and prayers and please use extra caution in our neck of the woods too!

Road Weary in Leadville Today

wildfire traffic

Highway 24 South of Leadville was closed twice yesterday the first day of Summer. The early morning incident involved a single car crash with a utility structure leading to a gas leak. Later in the afternoon, it was a small wildfire, that crews quickly extinguished. Photo: Leadville Today/Kathy Bedell.

Yesterday, June 21, which marked the official first day of summer, saw two road closures for Highway 24 South of Leadville. The first occurred at 5:30 a.m. at 24South and Hwy 300 (the turn off to the Fish Hatchery). As the Xcel Energy guy at the scene put it – “a guy who didn’t quite make the curve careened into a tough shed shack which housed some utility lines/equipment.” That crash caused a gas leak and forced the highway closure for early morning commuters, re-routing traffic on to County Road 6, also known as the Long & Derry Road to locals. Crews got things under control and the road re-opened after a couple of hours.

xcel energy

Xcel Energy crews replaced the gas utility lines damaged during a single vehicle crash early Wednesday morning. Photo: Leadville Today/Kathy Bedell

Later in the afternoon about 4 p.m. there was a wildfire reported near Crystal Lake which stopped traffic in both directions on Highway 24 again for about an hour. While fire officials are still investigating the situation – which fortunately only burned about 3/4 acre – initial reports from the scene indicated the source may have been from a lighter fluid can.

Of course, foremost on locals’ minds has been the “restriping” of historic Harrison Avenue.

The following is the official word from the Colorado Department of Transportation’s (CDOT) Mark Bunnell with the Region 3 Traffic Operations. Of course, Lake County residents, old and new, full-timers and part-timers and visitors alike had a lot to say on the Leadville Today Facebook Page. Join the conversation.

In the meantime there will be CDOT workers, as well as local street crews, back out on the avenue again today and tomorrow, so please be courteous and take extra caution.

Roadsafe Traffic Systems restriped Harrison Avenue (US-24) in Leadville yesterday for three lanes (previous was four lanes) and a bike lane. Attached are several photos showing the completed striping. Roadsafe will be replacing the existing crosswalks and stop bars and installing new left-turn arrows and bike symbols on Thursday and Friday. I plan to get more photos next week after the stencil work is completed. In addition, this morning the CDOT signal electricians installed two exclusive left-turn lane signs on the signal mast arms at the 6th Street traffic signal. Thanks to the Leadville City Streets crew for putting out “No Parking” signs, and for the Leadville Police Department Officers who helped enforce it. We would not have been able to stripe the bike lane with cars parked along Harrison Avenue. Thank You. – Mark Bunnell.

Restripe Harrison Avenue CDOT_1

The “restriping” of historic Harrison Avenue will see completion today and tomorrow (June 22 & 23) as Colorado Department of Transportation crews return for additional stenciling and signage for Leadville’s main street’s new traffic reconfiguration. Join the conversation over on the Leadville Today Facebook Page. Photo: CDOT/Mark Burnell.

Restripe Harrison Avenue CDOT_2

The “restriping” of historic Harrison Avenue will see completion today and tomorrow (June 22 & 23) as Colorado Department of Transportation crews return for additional stenciling and signage for Leadville’s main street’s new traffic reconfiguration. Join the conversation over on the Leadville Today Facebook Page. Photo: CDOT/Mark Burnell.

Restripe Harrison Avenue CDOT_3

The “restriping” of historic Harrison Avenue will see completion today and tomorrow (June 22 & 23) as Colorado Department of Transportation crews return for additional stenciling and signage for Leadville’s main street’s new traffic reconfiguration. Join the conversation over on the Leadville Today Facebook Page. Photo: CDOT/Mark Burnell.

There is also road work being done out at the Turquoise Lake. Travelers could find a section of County Road 4 closed to through traffic between the Hagerman Pass turnoff and the May Queen Campground. Lake County Road and Bridge crews are repairing some bad spots along the rough lake road which is seeing increased traffic with every passing day.

Full access to campgrounds should not be impeded. However drivers should use County Road 9 (the lake’s northern road way) to access May Queen and Timberline Lake as well as other popular hiking trailheads in the area.

It’s that time of year folks, so please be extra careful on the roads and anytime using an open flame for work or fun! Thanks to the local emergency crews for keeping everyone safe! – Leadville Today Staff Report.

Turquoise Lake Road Repair

Lake County Public Works Road and Bridge Crews installed the the culvert at the western end of Turquoise Lake last fall. The coming weeks will see road repairs in the area of the May Queen Campground as crews repair the rough lake road and eventually lay down some new pavement. Photo: Leadville Today/Kathy Bedell.

 

 

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