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37E Fire forcing residents, businesses in Lyons to remain prepared

Posted at 4:29 PM, Apr 16, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-16 19:35:01-04

LYONS, Colo. — As the 37E Fire continued to burn near the Blue Mountain area in Larimer County Saturday morning, the nearby town of Lyons had a slow and quiet start, local business owners say.

"It's a different day with the fire," Sam Tallent, owner of The Stone Cup Cafe, said. "It is much more quiet. We're usually [seeing] a line out the door, and people just aren't being able to get into town or they're afraid to get into town."

A normally bustling place, Tallent says this latest wildfire is what's likely keeping people away.

"It has never been as bad as this year [or] in the past year," he said.

In the 35 years he's lived in Lyons, he can't recall a time when Colorado saw so many wildfires back to back.

According to the Rocky Mountain Area Coordination Center, there have been at least 14 wildfires so far this month. During the same time period in 2021 and 2020, there wasn't a report of a wildfire.

"You know something's going to happen, especially with the winds we've been having, and those have been the biggest nightmare as far as I'm concerned," Tallent said.

This wildfire period is just as concerning for travelers like Eddie Zayzek. Flames were just feet away from his cabin in Estes Park not too long ago.

"Even though I don't live here anymore, 100 percent, I still come up here several times a year, and it's horrible to drive through those places that have been devastated by wildfires," he said.

Tallent is prepared for anything and will leave if asked to should another natural disaster surround his home. But until then, he's staying put and ready to serve his loyal customers.

"If we're evacuated, we'll get evacuated," he said. "But I have nothing but faith in our fire department."