Trash and other items found during a raid of an illegal marijuana cultivation in the San Isabel National Forest. (Provided by U.S. Forest Service)

Found: 13,450 plants from illegal pot grow operation in San Isabel National Forest

The task force also confiscated a loaded shotgun and more than a half-ton of cultivation materials that included irrigation piping, pesticides, camping gear, and flammable liquids

A team of federal forestry and homeland security agents working with Huerfano County sheriff’s deputies this week found and destroyed a large illegal pot grow operation tucked inside the San Isabel National Forest.

Agents from the U.S. Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, Department of Homeland Security, the Colorado National Guard and deputies found the operation just east of Cuchara, and took in more than 13,450 plants and a loaded shotgun during the raid.

Though no arrests were made, the task force confiscated more than a half-ton of cultivation materials that included irrigation piping, pesticides, camping gear, and flammable liquids, the Forest Service announced in a statement.

“These illegal activities can also damage sensitive riparian areas, are often harmful or fatal to wildlife, and lead to other environmental problems,” the Forest Service statement said.

Anyone with information that could help the investigation is asked to contact the Forest Service at 303-275-5266.

This story was first published on DenverPost.com