Devastation After The Fires

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3 Responses to Devastation After The Fires

  1. scott allen says:

    The “ultra greens” aka: eco freaks, fail to realize that control burns are a natural thing. Prior to 1988 fire suppression was paramount in the forest service the resulting conflagration in 1988 in Yellowstone was the worst forest fire in the National Parks history, because of this policy. Having recently backpacked into Yellowstone it has staged a remarkable comeback with lodge pole pine, ponderosa pines and aspens covering the burned area.
    Your assessment of the “Native Americans’ starting fires is spot on, as the plains Indians would start grass fires to stampede the buffalo for easier “harvesting” these fires were also used as a defense against other Indian tribes, as a means to increase the visibility of the defenders against attackers. These grass fires were chronicled in book “Centennial”.
    The US forest service should right now, be allowing harvesting of trees killed by the pine bark beetle, but because of ecologist have prevented this harvest, I fear in the not too distant future vast areas of Colorado and Wyoming are going to burn because of this short sightedness.

  2. Tom O says:

    I agree that forest fires happen, and then again, there are times that they don’t. During those times there is going to be the build up of what we now call fuel load, and when the dry times come, things get dry.

    “Controlled burns” are only things that are done by man, not by Mother Nature. So the natives lighting fires to allow small areas to burn instead of large fires has nothing to do with the natural cycle of things, only what “man” forced upon the environment. Large fires, then, are not caused by man, they are Mother Nature’s way of doing what Mother Nature does, they are not caused by “man” not doing controlled burns.

    I agree that depending on where a fire is located, it should be dealt with or not by fire suppression techniques for the benefit of the environment. Because we prefer to live in rural settings rather than in rat warrens in the cities, those regions probably need to have man’s intervention, both in the form of controlled burns and suppression. There is no single solution to all problems.

    In the report on the Victoria fire of 1939, I saw no reference to arson, only that man had allowed the fuel load to grow in the forests. I found the heading “These fires were caused by the hand of man” or whatever it said exactly, to not reference the source of the fires, but I would guess the intensity.

    • Gator says:

      Many forests depend on regular wild fires to keep fuel from building up, and pine savannas are a great example. Early settlers spoke of massive pine forests through which you could drive an ox cart with ease. Regular wild fires burn low and slow and never reach the canopy, clearing the underbrush and creating healthier forests. When man started trying to stop wild fires, he only made things worse.

      Once we heated our homes with wood, and that meant harvesting dead trees and gathering wood from the forest floor. I remember that as a boy scout we would often have trouble finding firewood in areas where we regularly camped, and we often resorted to using a rope to pull dead branches down from the trees. Now many forests ban the gathering of dead wood. Extremely stupid.

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