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Jacob Lake, AZ 2020 | Photo Credit: Karen L Monsen

species other than Ponderosa Pine create dense thickets that contribute to severe fires like the 2020 Mangum Fire near Jacob Lake, Arizona. Hand thinning and prescribed burns can reduce accumulated fuels without damaging the terrain. FIGHTING FIRE WITH FIRE Forests on the Grand Canyon North Rim have experienced many fires over the years. The Warm Fire that burned North Rim in 2006 has regenerated with Aspen, but Ponderosa and conifers may take several decades to return. In pine forests where the park service has been letting blazes burn for decades, tree numbers per acre are dropping from hundreds or thousands to tens; thereby reducing biomass that feeds severe fires. Ponderosa Pine ecosystems are most healthy when low severity fires occur routinely. Following the 1988 Yellowstone National Park fire that burned 800,000 acres of lodgepole pine, Trudeau suggested at the time, “It seemed like the end of the world,” but that now fire managers and scientists agree, “It was actually the beginning of a new forest, one that is more healthy, diverse, and resilient to bark beetles, and provides better wildlife habitat.”


| VIEW ON MAGAZINE | Jan/Feb 2021

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ViewOn Magazine January / February 2021  

ViewOn Magazine January / February 2021