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  • Yosemite Fire

    This is a big one that is going to be talked about for years, like the 1988 Yellowstone fire. Will the message be the same?

  • #2
    Originally posted by Baaahb View Post
    This is a big one that is going to be talked about for years, like the 1988 Yellowstone fire. Will the message be the same?
    'scuse the ignorance. What was the message?

    One thing that is probably contributing is too much fuel in the forest. USFS Planners have limited tree removal for decades. We have a catastrophe lurking here in Truckee. Tons of trees succumbing to bark beetles, but no one is willing to take them down because it's illegal. To take them down and use them for firewood requires a special permit, and you have to pay for it. IMO - THEY (the gubmint) should pay US to take 'em down, 'cuz we're doing the work. I know, that isn't realistic, but puhleeez don't stop me from doing something that benefits all and I'll do it for free if you'll just get out of my way.
    Ain't no turn like tele!

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    • #3
      The Yellowstone fire cast the last word against aggressive fire suppression, the message being that if man stops small wildfires from continual cleansing/regeneration of the forest, then he will end up with catastrophic wildfires like Yellowstone '88.

      Perhaps there is another message as well, that with widespread ecological events like beetle kill, man can (or at least should try), through active intervention and forest thinning/fuels reduction, prevent catastrophic fires like Yosemite 2013...or the Angora fire.

      Fire is necessary to the landscape. The human desire that all fires be small and manageable may simply be unrealistic.

      IMO, the focus on loss of structures is misplaced and aggravating. Structures can be replaced in a matter of years. Ecosystems cannot.

      I don't think letting folks in to clear beetle kill is the right answer...many fires are started by human action....power tools (Hawken fire, Reno) or even just parking a hot car on tall grass. The Hawken fire illustrates that even if you see the fire starting and immediately act to suppress it, matters can rapidly get out of hand. Unfortunately, clearing areas of beetle kill or old fires requires careful management and controlled action, or you end up with exactly what you're trying to prevent.

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      • #4
        Like this map produced by the LA Times for seeing the fires progress VS the firefighters.

        Yosemite Firemap
        Ain't no turn like tele!

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        • #5
          I'm not sure how that map shows the efforts of firefighters, but was amused by the hostility in the comments: they're ready to rumble. Perhaps internet forums inevitably cause hostility to escalate: misunderstandings are more common and rapidly develop a life of their own.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Baaahb View Post
            The Yellowstone fire cast the last word against aggressive fire suppression, the message being that if man stops small wildfires from continual cleansing/regeneration of the forest, then he will end up with catastrophic wildfires like Yellowstone '88.
            Well that message has kinda been ignored...

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            • #7
              I love that the title of this thread "Yosemite Fire" is followed in the listing by "Started by Baaahb". How's that for hostility, Roberto?
              It's turns! Of course it's worth the hike!

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              • #8
                It puts a real perspective on "flame wars".

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                • #9
                  OK, this smoke is really putting the brakes on our training. We are doing a pretty stout bike tour in Oct(stout atleast for us) and need to get on our bikes. So, haven't ridden in over a week. Hopefully it is all over in a few days?? However the windsurfing and kiting here has been good but errie, kinda like sailing in the Bay area.

                  Lynn cruising around Washoe Lake in 20 mph wind on a 9m kite. Wind over water actually disperses smoke and ash so not as bad as it looks, very doable.

                  Click image for larger version

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                  Last edited by Quadzilla; 27 August 2013, 08:13 PM.
                  "Just say no to groomed snow"

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by jfb View Post
                    I love that the title of this thread "Yosemite Fire" is followed in the listing by "Started by Baaahb".
                    First genuine LOL of the new era.

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                    • #11
                      They just closed Tioga pass road coming up from the west.... bummer as it nixes (or at least severely alters) my weekend plans.

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                      • #12
                        I just got back from 5 days in Yose Valley, where there was no smoke (and about half the people compared to usual in August). Stunned, though, looking at the perimeter map, and some of my favorite spots along Cherry Creek. Also the whole entire "T" run (and the "Cherry Creek" run upstream) are well within the burn zone.

                        I hiked a particular off-trail route I like there last year, and it was thick with brush and with a soft carpet of accumulated dry pine needles. Like baaahb says, fires are part of how the ecosystem is supposed to work in the Sierra foothills, except that there's an ethic that fires must be put out quickly; that ends up being an institutional preference for big fires every 30 years, versus small fires every 5 years, unfortunately.

                        The other approach is managed burns, which they do inside Yose NP, but I doubt there's money for it in the National Forests. That's another institutional preference: Managed burns and other prevention costs money, but emergencies and disasters sort of don't. Well actually they do, far far more money, but the key thing is that they're off-budget. And the political pressures are all about what's in the budgets, hence the strong preference for disasters versus management.

                        As for the gubment and bark beetles, I don't know, it may be a factor in fire hazards out where you are. However, in the Tuolumne drainage, I don't think the "gubment" preventing people from harvesting their own dry pine needles and underbrush from these steep remote slopes was much of a factor in causing this fire to get so big so fast. Oh, and there's been plenty of logging, clear-cutting in some sections, within the area we're talking about NE of Groveland.

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