Seedlings planted at fire-damaged Royal Gorge Park

planting seed
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CANON CITY, Colo. (AP) -- Volunteers have planted about 5,000 pinon pine seedlings in Royal Gorge Park, which was damaged by a wildfire last year.

Melanie Scavarda with the Fremont Conservation District tells The Canon City Daily Record the seedlings are about 2 feet tall now, and in about four years, they should be more visible from a distance. About 5,000 trees will be planted by June 15, and another 5,000 are planned in the years to come.

About 2,200 acres of city property burned in the June 2013 Royal Gorge Fire, but no homes were lost and no one was injured.

District Forester John Grieve with the Colorado State Forest Service says "we've really turned the clock back with that fire. It would take centuries for this to naturally recover."

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