(WMC) - Fires have been burning out of control for days in Colorado.
Firefighters are working two main areas. The largest is in southwestern Colorado and has burned more than 26,000 acres and is only 15 percent controlled.
Another area is about 65 miles west of Denver in Buffalo Mountain where 91 acres are ablaze with the potential to expand.
Temperatures have been in the mid 90s this week and the air has been very dry with humidity levels around 20 percent.
The area is also suffering from severe to exceptional drought. The entire southwestern U.S. is experiencing a long-term significant precipitation deficit.
This, combined with exceptional heat and very dry air, has lead to Red Flag Warnings being issued for much of the southwest including western Colorado.
It is believed that the fires in Colorado were a result of dry thunderstorms.
As storms formed over the areas rainfall evaporated before reaching the surface but cloud to ground lightning from the storms struck very dry tender igniting it and then the flames were fanned by strong surface winds.
Smoke from the fires has been so intense that it's can be seen on satellite imagery.
There is a chance of rain over the fire ravaged area later this week but it's still uncertain whether it will be enough to help firefighters get the fires under control.
There is also the fear that additional dry thunderstorms could cause other fires to form.