Forest Fires in the United States
12 June 2013
On June 25, 2013, the ISERV Pathfinder camera on the International Space Station captured this view of the the Royal Gorge wildfire scar. The blaze destroyed 48 of the 52 structures at Royal Gorge Bridge & Park, an amusement park on the rim of Royal Gorge. An aerial tram, antique carousel, and the park’s visitor center were among the structures lost. While the fire caused damage on both sides of the gorge, the Royal Gorge Bridge—the centerpiece of the park—escaped with only minor damage. The bridge stands 955 feet (291 meters) above the Arkansas River, making it one of the highest suspension bridges in the world.
These images taken by
Expedition 36 crew on board of the International Space Station (ISS) on June
19, 2013, show thick smoke billows across the landscape in these digital
photographs of the western United States.
The images show a plume wafting from the West Fork Complex fire, which was burning explosively in southwestern Colorado near Pagosa Springs. To the northwest, a smaller plume from the Wild Rose fire is also visible (upper image).
The West Fork Complex is a combination of three fires: the West Fork fire, the Windy Pass fire, and the Papoose fire. Lightning ignited the first of the blazes on June 5, 2013, and together they had charred approximately 75,000 acres (30,000 hectares) by June 25. The fires were burning in rugged terrain with large amounts of beetle-killed spruce forests.
On June 21, 2013, the
Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) on
the Terra satellite acquired this view of
the burn scar of the Black Forest fire near Colorado Springs. Vegetation-covered
land is red in the false-color image, which includes both visible and infrared
light. Patches of unburned forest are bright red. Unburned grasslands are pink.
The darkest gray and black areas are the most severely burned. Buildings, roads,
and other developed areas appear light gray and white.
Edith Wolford elementary school (in the middle of teh image) though it was in the middle of an area that was severely burned, survived intact partly because of the large, treeless parking lot surrounding it.
On June 22, 2013, the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite captured this image of the West Fork fire complex burning in the San Juan and Rio Grande National Forests of southwestern Colorado. Red outlines indicate hot spots where MODIS detected unusually warm surface temperatures associated with fire. The fires were burning in rugged terrain with large amounts of beetle-killed spruce forests. South Fork, a nearby town with about 400 people, has been evacuated.
On June 12, 2013, the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra and Aqua satellites captured these images of the fire about 30 kilometers northeast of Colorado Springs. The Terra image (top) was collected at 12:05 p.m. Mountain Daylight Time, and the Aqua image (lower) was collected at 1:40 p.m. MDT. Red outlines indicate hot spots where MODIS detected the unusually warm surface temperatures associated with fires.
On June 11, 2013, the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite captured this image of the Royal Gorge, Big Meadows, and Black Forest fires burning in Colorado. Red outlines indicate hot spots where MODIS detected unusually warm surface temperatures associated with fires.
Black Forest fire report (published by Rcky Mountain Incident Reporting System (RMIRS), 11 June 2013)
Royal Gorge fire report (published by Incident Information System, 11 June 2013)
Big Meadows fire report (published by Incident Information System, 10 June 2013)
Wildland Fire related news from the Media: Note: The hyperlinks on the left side of each news are password-protected (User ID and password to enter the GFMC database are available for partners of GFMC. To obtain the ID and password, please send your query to firstname.lastname@example.org). The links on the right side (in brackets) are leading to the original news source; sometimes these news are expiring rather swiftly - a reason for the establishment of the internal GFMC database):
- Wonder Where Colorado Wildfire Smoke Goes? It Might Be East Coast Bound (published by www.kunc.org 28 June 2013)
- Climate Change Threatens Forest Survival On Drier, Low-Elevation Sites (published by www.sciencedaily.com 28 June 2013)
- Colorado Black Forest fire burn scar (published by http://earthsky.org 28 June 2013)
- Senators protest cuts to wildfire prevention funds (published by www.boston.com 28 June 2013)
- Federal wildfire budgets need a makeover (published by http://summitcountyvoice.com 28 June 2013)
- Not cutting your grass could cost $3,000 (published by http://greenfield.patch.com 28 June 2013)
- A 125 square mile wildfire in Colorado seen from space (published by www.nationaljournal.com 27 June 2013)
- Cost of Battling Wildfires Cuts Into Prevention Efforts (published by www.nytimes.com, 27 June 2013)
- Beetles to blame for Colorado's fires? Blame climate change instead (published by www.nbcnews.com, 25 June 2013)
- Wildfire Forces Scout Troop to Evacuate Colorado Camp (published by www.nbcdfw.com, 26 June 2013)
- The cohesive strategy for better wildland fire planning and response (published by www.firefighternation.com 25 June 2013)
- Wildfires impacting tourism (published by www.nbc11news.com, 24 June 2013)
- Change in weather needed at Colorado fire (published by www.wday.com, 24 June 2013)
- More Military Air Tankers Join Fight on Wildland Fires (published by www.defense.gov 24 June 2013)
- West Fork Complex: Wind shift offers hope to save South Fork from fire (published by www.denverpost.com, 24 June 2013)
- Fire mitigation measures saved some Black Forest homes (published by www.denverpost.com, 21 June 2013)
- Editorial: Fee would offset firefighting costs (published by www.dcourier.com, 21 June 2013)
- Megadrought in U.S. Southwest: A bad omen for forests globally (published by www.e360.yale.edu 20 June 2013)
- Fighting more forest fires will come back to burn us (published by www.onearth.org 19 June 2013)
- As wildfires rage, federal government is cutting funding on fire prevention (published by www.thedenverchannel.com 19 June 2013)
- Colorado wildfire task force tackles building in burn zones (published by www.denverpost.com 18 June 2013)
- Firefighting costs will soar as Colorado homes continue to develop on forested land (published by www.9news.com 17 June 2013)
- Officials Expect This To Be Worst Fire Season Ever (published by www.losangeles.cbslocal.com 17 June 2013)
- Fire-Alert System Hailed in Colorado (published by www.stream.wsj.com 17 June 2013)
- Why does the government encourage people to build homes in wildfire zones? (published by www.washingtonpost.com 17 June 2013)
- Bad bushfire planning burns money (published by www.theconversation.com 17 June 2013)
- Explosive and expensive wildfires in Colorado becoming "new normal" (published by www.denverpost.com 17 June 2013)
- Colorado fire: Is global warming one of the culprits? (published by www.csmonitor.com 15 June 2013)
- Wildfires set new destructive records in Colorado and New Mexico due to climate change (published by www.indybay.org 14 June 2013)
- Wildfire scorches Colorado, two found dead (published by www.nydailynews.com 14 June 2013)
- Military Bases Support Colorado Firefighting Effort (published by www.defense.gov 14 June 2013)
- Home Insurers: Only You can Prevent Wildfires (published by www.foxbusiness.com 14 June 2013)
- Crews battling killer Colo. wildfire hold flames in check (published by www.cbsnews.com, 14 June 2013)
- 1,000 Colo. Springs homes evacuating due to fire (published by www.news.yahoo.com 14 June 2013)
- 360-plus homes destroyed in Colo. Springs wildfire (published by http://news.yahoo.com 14 June 2013)
- Colorado wildfires char homes, thousands of acres, force prison evacuation (published by www.usnews.nbcnews.com 13 June 2013)
- Black Forest fire prompts more evacuations, fears of spreading (published by www.denverpost.com 13 June 2013)
- Governor John Hickenlooper signs executive orders authorizing emergency firefighting funds (published by www.thedenverchannel.com 12 June 2013)
- 3 Colorado wildfires burn out of control (published by www.foxnews.com 12 June 2013)
- Black Forest fire still 0 percent contained, remains near 8,000 acres (published by www.kktv.com 12 June 2013)