Tourism Industry Continues to Lose Business Amid Western Fires

By: Associated Press Email
By: Associated Press Email

The operator of an RV park at Colorado's Pikes Peak says the tourists are going elsewhere. Chris Champlin says they don't want to vacation where it's "smoky and uncomfortable."

A nearby wildfire that emptied out the RV park is burning out of control, covering more than 5 square miles Monday. Smoke is sometimes obscuring Pikes Peak.

In the tourist town of Manitou Springs at the base of the peak, the Blue Skies Inn is back in business Monday, a day after guests were told to evacuate. The manager is worried that officials are scaring people away by issuing calls for help fighting the fires.

In central Utah, a wildfire in an area dotted with vacation cabins is burning an estimated 39 square miles and threatening about 300 homes. It's about 10 percent contained. Sheriff's officials say as many as 30 structures may have been lost.

Firefighters in New Mexico Monday are mopping up a small wildfire that had threatened one of the state's top tourist attractions, a 19th-century church north of Santa Fe. It appears to be out of danger.

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