Aerial Fire Fighting
A fire broke out in the mountains south of Pikes Peak this afternoon.  The smoke is visible from Fremont County Airport.  Locally positioned air assets and fire fighters responded immediately.  You can see the smoke on the ridge line in the picture of the Single Engine Air Tanker (SEAT) taking on slurry at the airport tanker base.

The Huey and Pilatus had finished for the day when I took the pictures.  The SEATs were still in action.  Watching the SEATs take off with a load was interesting.  The airport is at 5,400' and it was in the high 90's, giving a density altitude of 9,000'.  The wind was variable, but mostly blowing a crosswind out of the south.  The SEATs were taking off to the east, then immediately doing a right turnout to the south into the wind to gain altitude before swinging north to approach the fire.  The smoke from the fire was blowing northeast.


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Sunday afternoon I swung by Fremont County Airport (1V6) and discovered 9 SEATs on the ramp.  Three were actively engaged in fire fighting, most likely attacking the Spring fire to the south.  The other six were in for a required periodic inspection.  It was a busy ramp.

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A news article related to the firefighting activity at Fremont County Airport can be found at this link:
https://www.chieftain.com/news/region/smaller-airports-also-helping-battle-blazes/article_446c7cf2-7b81-5fd9-b003-f6a8236923b6.html
Sometimes pre-positioned aerial fire fighting crews have a lot of time on their hands.  This sort of mischief results.
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The 2019 fire season in southern Colorado got underway with a small fire in the local mountains.  This brought in a Columbia (Chinook) CH-47D.  A large grass fire out east brought in four SEATs.  the Kaman showed up the next day.

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