March 28, 2010

Weather, Wildfire Forecast for Northern Rockies

Preliminary Fire Season 2010 Outlook for the Northern Rockies currently forecasts a dry summer.

Although the narrated slide show is focused on the Rockies from Grand Teton NP north to the Canadian border, you can also pick up some Southern Rockies information from the slides as well.

El NiƱo
has been good to the mountains of Arizona and New Mexico, and pretty good to us in southern Colorado. At my house in the foothills, March brought at least three feet of snow, interrupted by melts, with April still to go.

Via the Wildfire Today blog, which also points out that the massive stands of beetle-killed pine in the Rockies are less likely to support catastrophic crown fires than are living trees.

While it may seem intuitive that dead trees will lead to more fires, there is little scientific evidence to support the contention that beetle-killed trees substantially increase risk of large blazes. In fact, there is evidence to suggest otherwise.
That was the "Katrina of the West," prediction, you may recall.

1 comment:

Peculiar said...

Crap! Hardly unexpected, though. Looking forward to some low water up there this year; fortunately, low-water technical boating can be pretty fun for the guides. I'm glad I won't be there past mid-July. I'm sure enjoying New Mexico's weather these days!