Nearly 40 percent of Rim Fire land a 'moonscape'

Sep 19, 2013 by Tracie Cone

A fire that raged in forestland in and around Yosemite National Park has left a contiguous "moonscape" in the Sierra Nevada mountains larger than any in centuries.

The Rim Fire has consumed about 400 square miles, but within that footprint is an area of 60 square miles that burned so intensely everything likely is dead.

Jay Miller of the U.S. Forest Service called the amount of devastation from the fast-moving conflagration the largest since the 1300s.

Miller used satellite images to determine that dozens of other hot spots also burned inside the fire's footprint. He said in total, nearly 40 percent of the area inside the fire's boundary likely will look like a moonscape.

The blaze ignited Aug. 17 when a hunter's fire swept away. It is under control.

Explore further: Bridgmanite: World's most abundant mineral finally named

4.7 /5 (3 votes)
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

NASA image: Rim Fire in California

Aug 26, 2013

The Rim Fire began in California on August 17, 2013. The cause of the fire is still under investigation. This fire is treacherous and has tripled in size in the last few days to now over 106,000 acres. The ...

NASA image: Rim Fire update—Sept. 6, 2013

Sep 06, 2013

The Rim Fire, now three weeks old, is still burning through Yosemite Forest. The blaze, thought to have been started by a hunter's illegal fire, has consumed over 246,000 acres of land. At present, this fire ...

NASA image: Rim Fire update Sept. 10, 2013

Sep 10, 2013

Hot and extremely dry conditions combined with shifting winds and low humidity continue to plague firefighter efforts at the Rim Fire in California. To date over 254,000 acres have been burned. Pockets of ...

NASA image: Rim Fire update—Aug. 30, 2013

Aug 30, 2013

Update for August 30, 2013 - The fire is over 201,00 acres as of 6 am this morning, Aug. 30, 2013 with containment at 32%. More than 40,000 acres of that fire have burned within Yosemite National Park. At ...

Squelching Sierra fires left forest ready to burn

Aug 28, 2013

Unnaturally long intervals between wildfires and years of drought primed the Sierra Nevada for the explosive conflagration burning the rugged landscape on the edge of Yosemite National Park, forestry experts ...

Recommended for you

Bridgmanite: World's most abundant mineral finally named

14 hours ago

A team of geologists in the U.S. has finally found an analyzable sample of the most abundant mineral in the world allowing them to give it a name: bridgmanite. In their paper published in the journal Science, the te ...

Volcano in south Japan erupts, disrupting flights

21 hours ago

A volcano in southern Japan is blasting out chunks of magma in the first such eruption in 22 years, causing flight cancellations and prompting warnings to stay away from its crater.

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

Doug_Huffman
not rated yet Sep 19, 2013
Wildfire catastrophes will continue until the greenies learn that regular prescribed burns control the undergrowth and understory and preven crowning. Redwoods, coast and giant, easily survive all fires but crown fires. Have you ever seen 12 inch thick bark?

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.