A rapidly growing wildfire in the US state of Colorado broke out over some major tourist spots over the weekend, leading to the evacuation of some 11,000 people from homes in Colorado Springs and nearby communities.

Around two dozen homes near Rocky Mountain National Park and hotels and campgrounds at the base of Pikes Peak, one of the most visited mountains in North America, have been evacuated, Reuters reported.

The tourism in the region as affected as the cog railway that runs up the 4,302-metre (14,115ft) high Pikes Peak had to shut because of the rising smoke plumes in the air.

"There is a forest fire which is located approximately 5 miles Northwest from Manitou Springs. At this time, Manitou Springs and the Railway Depot are not threatened, however, as a precautionary move, we are not running trains today," the Pikes Peak Cog Railway authorities said in a statement on Monday.

The Waldo Canyon fire that broke out on Saturday northwest of Colorado Springs has charred about 3,600 acres (15 sq km) of US Forest Service land and continues to burn out of control, according to authorities.

"This fire continues to be persistent and find new areas that it can burn," the incident commander, Bill Hahnenberg, told Reuters.

Latest pictures below the state of Colorado wildfire...

The setting sun is obscured by smoke from the Waldo Canyon Fire, west of Colorado Springs, 24 June 2012.REUTERS
Smoke billows near houses in a mountain subdivision, west of Colorado Springs, 24 June 2012.REUTERS
The vast new Colorado wildfires that erupted on Saturday and spread through Colorado Springs are posing threats to tourism areas close to Piles Peak and Rocky Mountain Park.REUTERS
The Waldo Canyon Fire, a stubborn blaze burning near Colorado Springs, is exhibiting "extreme fire behavior with extreme rates of spread," officials said on Wednesday.REUTERS
Trees are engulfed with flames in a mountain subdivision in the Waldo Canyon fire west of Colorado Springs, Colorado, 24 June 2012.REUTERS