From The Summit Daily:
“The Blue River turned orange in Breckenridge on Saturday afternoon. The river’s water went from its natural blue-green hue to a bright, burnt orange within a few hours, with emergency officials believing the discoloration to be runoff from an area above Illinois Gulch known to cause similar discoloration in the past.
After investigating, fire officials determined that the runoff came from a mine located on private property at the corner of Boreas Pass Road and Bright Hope Circle. The water runoff at the source appeared as a thick, muddy orange stream with no obvious unique odor or taste. Fire officials said that the location has been the source of orange mine runoffs in the past.
A similar event in 2006 was caused by runoff from a mine in the same general location. The orange spill continued for several days, carrying with it high levels of toxic heavy metals. The incident resulted in the mass death of many fish in the Blue River.”
Although officials have said that the orange sludge water is of no threat to the public health, we hope that this incident will not result in the same mass loss of fish life as the last mine spill into the Blue River in 2006.
To discover more images and details about the spill, check out the full Summit Daily article, here.