There is actually a large body of scientific information, from scientists who actually understand forests, insects, fire ecology and why houses burn in wildfires. You wouldn't know it from reading the media though, or reading some of the stuff posted here, either.
Here are some of the basics ....
First, let's hear from the US Forest Service (USFS - emphasis and numbers mine):
 Forest conditions susceptible to mountain pine beetle infestation in pine forests were recognized by Forest Service personnel as early  as the mid-1990s. These conditions were noted as the rationale for vegetation treatments in Purpose and Need statements for disclosure documents required under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).  In the 1990’s, vegetation treatments in lodgepole pine stands that would have increased resiliency to drought or insect attack (timber sales and stand improvement projects such as thinning) lacked public acceptance. These practices, which increase growth rates and vigor of individual trees by reducing competition, were routinely appealed and litigated. This hampered the ability of the Forest Service to address stand conditions susceptible to outbreak. starts with "Forest conditions" - not climate change, not logging, not whatever your pet theory is, but forest conditions. What conditions? Lots of lodgepole pine in the range of 60-120 years old, where beetle-caused mortality is high. In this diary there's a link to a statistic that states that 87% of Colorado's lodgepole pine are over 80 years old. Beetles look for pines in that age range because a) they have enough sap wood (the outer wood just under the bark) to support beetle lifestyle and b) older trees are less able to fend off a beetle attack, especially in the high density stands where most beetle kills have occurred. On young trees with less sapwood, beetle tunnels that start by going through the bark come back out through the bark on the other end, which in beetle terms is a massive fail. Forest age, the lack of a distribution of ages, the ecology of lodgepole pine and lodgepole pine forests, and a century of fire suppression alone were sufficient to create the conditions for a massive beetle epidemic. Climate change didn't help, but it's not the sole or even dominant cause. It made the situation happen sooner, but Colorado forests would have reached this point, or even worse (more time for trees to fall, fuels to build up), without it.
 Moreover, people were skeptical about the potential spread of the insects. Many did not believe, looking at green trees that had been attacked by bark beetles, that they had actually been killed. That realization came a year later, when the trees turned red.
 "mid 1990s" really should be 1980s and  "lack of public acceptance" killed programs that far back. I don't have the links and can't find them at the moment, but it really was that far back. Beetle problems have been studied since the late 1940s, mitigation strategies were known in the 1970s, and the "forest conditions" were also well known - people didn't do all that work back then in anticipation of climate change. They did it because beetle epidemics have always been around given the right conditions.
 "Moreover ..." - the foliage on beetle-killed trees turns a lighter shade of green when the beetle infestation takes hold. By then it's too late to do anything but cut the tree down. By the next summer, the needles all turn a dark orange or red. Then the needles fall off the tree, adding easily ignitable fuel to the forest floor. The loss of needles opens the canopy, allowing more wind-caused drying and more sunlight to cause grass and brush to grow, increasing fire fuels. Eventually, the tree trunk weakens and the tree snaps, often 6 to 15 feet above the ground. The tree now on the forest floor is even more fuel on the forest floor for the next fire than the standing dead tree was.
The "lack of public acceptance" is a euphemism for "USFS got a lot of complaints and lawsuits about trees being cut down", which is a well-studied, proven succesful method for reducing beetle mortality (cutting down some trees that is - not lawsuits - to about 240 lodgepole per acre; see for example, The Mountain Pine Beetle: A Synthesis of Biology, Management, and Impacts on Lodgepole Pine which will tell you everything you want to know about pine beetles).
And the unaccepting public was not a) USFS "ologists" and fire managers, b) timber companies, c) climate change deniers, or d) the people who wrongly believe that logging solves every forest and forest fire problem (it would have solved this one though, right up to a few minutes before the first fire was ignited). You're free to speculate on what groups that leaves as responsible. Politicians is certainly one large group. People who don't like trees being cut down and oppose every kind of logging - what label might you apply to that group?
Sure, warmer winters might cause more beetles to survive (the larvae can live to -40C which by coincidence is also -40F, and my guess is that Colorado, at most altitudes, commonly has at least some winters that fail to get that cold for long enough). It's more likely that drought has increased beetle numbers because it weakens tree defenses (which rely on sap, which needs adequate water) allowing beetles to breed more successfully and only once (beetle epidemics are less likely when weather leads them to do another breeding cycle).
I'll just repeat again what I've pointed out in other diaries: climate change can be a factor in forest fires, but the state of western US forests and the kind and frequency of fires would be more or less the same even without climate change. Putting up windmills and driving electric cars does not improve or change the "forest conditions" noted above, for example. Which is not to ignore climate change, but if that's the only song you know, you're ignoring other major environmental problems, which most everybody is.
This is not a "nobody could have predicted" scenario, because people did predict and knew how to prevent it or at least reduce the severity - 25 years ago - which might have kept the fires away from highly populated areas at the very least. If you read the entire USFS article linked above, you'll find they were (finally) doing remediation - they had 18% of the acreage in the "Wildland-Urban Interface (WUI)" complete (the WUI is any place forest meets residential structures, even in rural areas). Apparently the 18% complete was not around Colorado Springs though.
By now you think I'm making shit up, maybe I'm a secret climate change denier, or just a little nuts. These people are talking about Arizona, but they're talking about a lot of the same things:
or this shorter video directly addressing climate change and wildfire (Dave Peterson - the scientist cited - contributed to the IPCC, among other credits):
Another topic is the huge loss of homes in these fires - over 600 if I'm viewing the numbers correctly (260 in the High Park Fire and 360 in Colorado Springs, I believe). People blame the lack of aircraft or other resources, or the wingnut government of Colorado Springs for cutting firefighter numbers and budget. Probably not, because it isn't flames that cause most houses to burn. 85% to 90% of homes or more could survive a crown fire (the most intense type) if prepared according to FireWise recommendations. California mandates this, and l'm pretty sure lost fewer homes, certainly fewer on a percentage basis, with larger fires of the same intensity in the last few years.
Here's why flames or the intense heat aren't the major worry in structure survival:
The presenter is Jack Cohen, the USFS researcher and physicist who quite literally wrote the book on structure survival. Here he is discussing preventing home ignitions.
Here's the tipoff from some recent news stories (sorry, no links, they were on AP or Reuters, I believe). One guy in Colorado Springs was discussing hosing his roof before he had to evacuate and lost his home. You don't hose fireproof roofs like composition shingles or metal roofs. You hose shake shingle roofs, because they're virtually guaranteed to ignite in a serious fire.
Another woman in Estes Park reported watching her deck ignite from underneath - decks should be screened so embers can't blow underneath and flammable materials, like pine needles or dry grass, shouldn't be under them in the first place.
Home ignitions are most often due to the combination of embers and some property of the home itself - a shake roof, firewood stacked near a door or near the home, pine needles in gutters or below siding, or dry vegetation too close to the house (within 30 feet). Calculations show that a home can resist a crown fire at 100 feet; experiments and actual fire data show that most often a home can resist a crown fire at 30 feet, with maybe a little scorching. But actual events show that embers can ignite shake roofs as far as 3 miles from the actual fire.
When you build a home in a high fire danger area, you have a responsibility to maintain that property in a condition that maximizes its survivability when a fire comes through. Fire is a natural and necessary part of those kinds of ecosystems, and paradoxically the more you suppress fire, the more severe the fire will be when it occurs. And it's always "when".
And if you believe climate change will cause more or larger fires, then you have an even greater responsibility to ensure your property can survive those fires, and to educate others to do the same. You can't say "nobody could have predicted ...".