Numerous forest fires breaking out in northern rockies
Much delayed forest fire season now upon us-
Although there have been a few large range fires, such as the 110,000 acre Jefferson fire on the Arco Desert (INL) in Eastern Idaho, now forest fires are quickly emerging in Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Oregon, etc.
Wildfire breaks out in Packer Meadows, atop Lolo Pass. Missoulian.
Fire in Bob Marshall Wilderness now burning 1,200 acres. Missoulian.
Yellowstone Park: Beach Fire continues in the Bridge Bay area. Jackson Hole Daily
Oregon: 2,000 lightning strikes spark about 30 fires. Bend Bulletin
East Idaho: Firefighters close in on controlling Blacktail wildfire. Idaho State Journal
Wyoming: Lightning sparks multiple fires in Bridger-Teton. Star Valley Independent
Here is the master source for national forest fire information.
Dr. Ralph Maughan is professor emeritus of political science at Idaho State University. He was a Western Watersheds Project Board Member off and on for many years, and was also its President for several years. For a long time he produced Ralph Maughan's Wolf Report. He was a founder of the Greater Yellowstone Coalition. He and Jackie Johnson Maughan wrote three editions of "Hiking Idaho." He also wrote "Beyond the Tetons" and "Backpacking Wyoming's Teton and Washakie Wilderness." He created and is the administrator of The Wildlife News.
2 Responses to Numerous forest fires breaking out in northern rockies
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Why is Yellowstone putting out lightning strike fires? All the knowledge of the let burn ’70’s era has been forgotten and Dark Ages mentality is back in order.
P.S. It seems a bit ironic the quote on the bridge ck (Beach fire) tells how they are using the older fire border as a fire line. Well da, the little ones they are putting out will not have this “border” to stop future fires.
I was protecting back country cabins during the ’88 fires and the fire commanders wanted bull dozers to do the same thing. All that was needed was a couple 5 horse pumps at the small streams, some hose, some sprinkler lines and foggers. The fires would roar through and all was A-OK on those wood shingled roofs.
They also wanted pontoon boats flown in from Alabama in an earlier fire so fire fighters could get across the calf high water on the upper Gallatin river. My boss and I went out, drug a couple dead trees to the waters edge and roped them together to act as a small bridge. Ta Da no wet feet for those fire fighters and a 100 dollars saved.
But you see, fire fighting is quite the adrenalin and power rush for incident commanders and these kinds of wasteful decisions are made over and over again. The supporting agencies, including the NPS of Yellowstone like it for all the money they save in budgets and the equipment bought for later use…out of govt.general funds instead of Park monies.
As for the lowly employees they know everyday on the fire means they get another day employeed at the end of the season.
The Park packers get to haul new equipment (later left in Yellowstone) and area outfitters are hired to do the same.
Every outfitter hired for packing gets lots of freebies and then that fall one can see all the guides wearing brand new Forest Service leather bgloves…taken out of freshly opened boxes of assorted sized gloves.
Plus all those retired rangers that stay in the area get to “work” on those fires (things like handing out supplies…no actual dirty jobs mind you….at their former GS 11 and 12 salaried level. It is like a good ole boy gathering, playing war in the bath tubs with rubber duckies.
So you see there are way too many reasons fire HAS to be fought in Yellowstone.
Oops, it should read 100,000 dollars, not $100 for amount saved on that foot bridge.