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Old 06-24-2012, 08:04 PM
 
Location: playing in the colorful Colorado dirt
4,486 posts, read 4,340,300 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Josseppie View Post
The smoke is very bad in Pueblo as well from the fire up there.
We're just south of the El Paso county line. When the wind shifts and comes from the northwest, it looks foggy here.

 
Old 06-24-2012, 11:54 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzlover View Post
As wanneroo pointed out, people who have lived in Colorado a long time (like me) who are familiar with Colorado forest ecology have seen this day coming for a long time. It was inevitable, given a century of fire suppression, that a savage drought would eventually combine with tinderbox forests to lead to what we see today.
Had nature been allowed to take it's natural course, these forests would have been thinned out by the natural process of fire years & years ago. The fire suppression used to protect buildings that shouldn't have been built where they were in the first place have done nothing but build up larger & larger stockpiles of fuel so that when a fire does spark, it's damn near impossible to stop. If people didn't exist, the forests would cleanse themselves naturally of all of the beetle damage and other tinder that has been developing periodically and overall, would be far healthier & more vibrant than what we see these days.
 
Old 06-25-2012, 02:04 AM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
20,895 posts, read 37,602,852 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzlover View Post
... familiar with Colorado forest ecology have seen this day coming for a long time. It was inevitable, given a century of fire suppression, that a savage drought would eventually combine with tinderbox forests to lead to what we see today. ... What is certain, though, is that man-caused unhealthy forests caused by fire suppression--that fire suppression in the last 20-30 years or so often made necessary because of man-made structures being built in places that precluded proper forest management--are a big reason that the current fires are so large and dangerous. The sad irony is that the reason these fires are burning so furiously is because of those structures that firefighters are risking their lives to save--many of those structures built where they never should have been allowed in the first place. Just watch all the politicians and everybody else try to tap dance around that ugly truth.
As we know, this has been coming for 30+ yrs. THIS is a very early fire season, we can only hope Mother Nature gives us a break, as our feeble human attempts CAN NOT hold a candle to Mother Nature. At some point (not too far from now) fighting CO fires COULD become a lost cause. Lets hope not. I know a lot of unemployed Wildland firefighters in PNW (it is still raining here). Sending just one week of our rain / humidity would do more good than all firefighters combined. It is possible there could be a week of deluge / humidity in CO. The week of fog following the Big T flood (31 Jul 1976) was the eeriest weather week in my memory. Nature holds the trump card. I have been rained out more than one 4th of July in Colorado, lets hope it comes soon.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SoButCounty View Post
Had nature been allowed to take it's natural course, these forests would have been thinned out by the natural process of fire years & years ago. ...If people didn't exist, ....
but PEOPLE do exist, as a ranch kid who was forced off 3 properties due to high taxes caused by rural RE $$ flowing in... I have pretty hard feelings about the 'development' thing, but... we live in the "Land of the free" and doing so, we pay a price. Greenies or politicians are not the answer either, but an informed electorate could learn and improve forest management. (Hint: THAT is not gonna happen in USA, the RICH electorate can BUY the votes... MANY states are completely managed by a couple high population counties who know nothing about forest management). Something has to CHANGE...Intelligent, informed, and decisive people. Living through a crisis tends to create that type.

Good luck to all, I feel for your pain.
 
Old 06-25-2012, 05:14 AM
 
16,438 posts, read 18,550,801 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StealthRabbit View Post
MANY states are completely managed by a couple high population counties who know nothing about forest management). Something has to CHANGE...Intelligent, informed, and decisive people. Living through a crisis tends to create that type.
We can hope.
 
Old 06-25-2012, 10:01 AM
 
1,052 posts, read 1,579,611 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bideshi View Post

but PEOPLE do exist, as a ranch kid who was forced off 3 properties due to high taxes caused by rural RE $$ flowing in... I have pretty hard feelings about the 'development' thing, but... we live in the "Land of the free" and doing so, we pay a price.
I agree, my point being that had natural processes been allowed to run their course, fires would not have been eliminated but the natural cleansing process that takes place would reduce the occurrence of large, dangerous wildfires.

I too am not fond of the development that has taken place and I am moving to Colorado. I am not however, settling in a mountain setting choosing instead to reside in the high desert area of the four corners on land purchased from the family who has owned it for generations. Colorado's mountains and forests are beautiful and are wonderful & inspiring places to visit. I don't believe however that they should be filled with residential developments. They should be visited, enjoyed for recreation, respected for the treasures they are, then left behind undisturbed to allow nature to function as it does. Unfortunately, the free market society we live in is driven by the need to build revenues and maximize profits and the results (although beneficial to developers pockets) can sometimes be catastrophic. Placing short term profits above long term responsible management simply satisfies the few to the ultimate detriment of many.
 
Old 06-25-2012, 10:58 AM
 
9,817 posts, read 19,055,035 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoButCounty View Post
I agree, my point being that had natural processes been allowed to run their course, fires would not have been eliminated but the natural cleansing process that takes place would reduce the occurrence of large, dangerous wildfires.

I too am not fond of the development that has taken place and I am moving to Colorado. I am not however, settling in a mountain setting choosing instead to reside in the high desert area of the four corners on land purchased from the family who has owned it for generations. Colorado's mountains and forests are beautiful and are wonderful & inspiring places to visit. I don't believe however that they should be filled with residential developments. They should be visited, enjoyed for recreation, respected for the treasures they are, then left behind undisturbed to allow nature to function as it does. Unfortunately, the free market society we live in is driven by the need to build revenues and maximize profits and the results (although beneficial to developers pockets) can sometimes be catastrophic. Placing short term profits above long term responsible management simply satisfies the few to the ultimate detriment of many.
I think that is the mistake many make is that they think if they live on the prairie or high desert, they are somehow exempt from some sort of impact on the earth. The reality is those desert and prairie areas are teeming with their own wildlife and plants. In some cases those desert areas have more variety in plants and animals than those high elevation treed areas. Also fire likes to visit the desert and the prairie as well.

So to think that because you have decided not to live among trees has somehow lessened the impact on the earth is false. The desert and prairie are not sterile places. Don't believe me? Do some research, get some books, talk to some experts.

Personally I don't agree with all this navel gazing and guilt tripping about humans being here on earth. We are a part the world and a part of nature. We need to live somewhere. There is no safe or special place. In many cases we make it better by improving the land and making it more productive and useful. People, in our lifetimes anyways, are never going to live at high elevations in Colorado in large numbers because most people can't handle 9 months of winter every year. So I wouldn't worry.

And if some people decide they do want to live up there, well, it's none of your business. Some of my family has lived up above 8000 feet in forested areas in Colorado for over 100 years. I think everyone is tired of these high and mighty city liberals from back east or from out on the left coast bringing their nonsensical greenie know it all nonsense into town, when they really know nothing at all about the environment they are going to be living in.
 
Old 06-25-2012, 12:08 PM
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
85,052 posts, read 99,018,950 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wanneroo View Post
I think that is the mistake many make is that they think if they live on the prairie or high desert, they are somehow exempt from some sort of impact on the earth. The reality is those desert and prairie areas are teeming with their own wildlife and plants. In some cases those desert areas have more variety in plants and animals than those high elevation treed areas. Also fire likes to visit the desert and the prairie as well.

So to think that because you have decided not to live among trees has somehow lessened the impact on the earth is false. The desert and prairie are not sterile places. Don't believe me? Do some research, get some books, talk to some experts.

Personally I don't agree with all this navel gazing and guilt tripping about humans being here on earth. We are a part the world and a part of nature. We need to live somewhere. There is no safe or special place. In many cases we make it better by improving the land and making it more productive and useful. People, in our lifetimes anyways, are never going to live at high elevations in Colorado in large numbers because most people can't handle 9 months of winter every year. So I wouldn't worry.

And if some people decide they do want to live up there, well, it's none of your business. Some of my family has lived up above 8000 feet in forested areas in Colorado for over 100 years. I think everyone is tired of these high and mighty city liberals from back east or from out on the left coast bringing their nonsensical greenie know it all nonsense into town, when they really know nothing at all about the environment they are going to be living in.
Was with you till the last paragraph. It's not just the "outsiders", especially easterners and west coasters who have these crazy ideas. I used to work for Boulder County. One time, I was in a county office building looking at a "Boulder County" poster and had an epiphany. There were no people in the picture! Boulder County was just mountains and farms!

They (the commissioners) apparently thought, at the time anyway, that people were irrlevant. We had a little joke that all they cared about was land use, parks and open space, and that we in immunizations were an afterthought. This was after one commissioner expressed that she didn't know that Boulder County even offered immunization clinics.
 
Old 06-25-2012, 12:26 PM
 
8,317 posts, read 25,148,227 times
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wanneroo says, "We are a part of the world and part of nature." Unfortunately, we don't act like it. We are like spoiled brats who think the rules do not apply to us. In the case of nature, though, the rules DO apply to us. The proof is the reaction to the fires we're experiencing now. Somehow, it's nature's fault that people's houses are burning. It's not. It's OUR fault to placing that stuff in harm's way. I would love to see some politician or community leader stand up and tell the truth: We allowed a whole lot of stuff to be built where it should have never been permitted. If those people insist on building in those places, then they should take personal responsibility for the consequences, and not expect the public and the taxpayers to save them from their folly. We have also been remiss in our management of the forests. That nature is now taking matters into its own hands is not nature's fault--it's OUR fault for failing to understand how forest ecology works. Of course, you won't hear anybody utter that, because actually taking responsibility for something is apparently now anathema for most modern Americans.

As far as Katiana's statement, I don't think that people are irrelevant. But, nor do I believe that we humans are above the rules of nature. Over the eons, it has been shown again and again that human arrogance in the face of nature usually winds up with humans being on the losing side.
 
Old 06-25-2012, 01:10 PM
 
9,817 posts, read 19,055,035 times
Reputation: 7541
Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzlover View Post
wanneroo says, "We are a part of the world and part of nature." Unfortunately, we don't act like it. We are like spoiled brats who think the rules do not apply to us. In the case of nature, though, the rules DO apply to us. The proof is the reaction to the fires we're experiencing now. Somehow, it's nature's fault that people's houses are burning. It's not. It's OUR fault to placing that stuff in harm's way. I would love to see some politician or community leader stand up and tell the truth: We allowed a whole lot of stuff to be built where it should have never been permitted. If those people insist on building in those places, then they should take personal responsibility for the consequences, and not expect the public and the taxpayers to save them from their folly. We have also been remiss in our management of the forests. That nature is now taking matters into its own hands is not nature's fault--it's OUR fault for failing to understand how forest ecology works. Of course, you won't hear anybody utter that, because actually taking responsibility for something is apparently now anathema for most modern Americans.

As far as Katiana's statement, I don't think that people are irrelevant. But, nor do I believe that we humans are above the rules of nature. Over the eons, it has been shown again and again that human arrogance in the face of nature usually winds up with humans being on the losing side.
Everything is in harms way. You can have fire in any corner of Colorado and in any landscape. You can also have wind storms, tornadoes, blizzards and maybe someday an earthquake of significance.

So that's my point. There is no exact place where we can live that is perfect. Fire is a part of nature and it's just something we have to deal with every so often.
 
Old 06-25-2012, 01:58 PM
 
808 posts, read 1,178,976 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wanneroo View Post
So that's my point. There is no exact place where we can live that is perfect. Fire is a part of nature and it's just something we have to deal with every so often.
This is painfully obvious, but since our Euro-centric concept of private property (fences, etc.) has necessarily displaced the hunter-gatherer concept of collective ownership in North America, fire management practices that worked for thousands of years have been displaced with fire mitigation/prevention tactics, leading to fewer but more massive, destructive fires. Again, this is obvious and I assume everyone pretty much knows this. Under the modern, Euro-centric model, fire is transformed from a good to a bad thing.

Growing up in an old shack near Malibu, I remember watching fires of less than 200 acres burning down 300+ houses. Everyone pretty much acknowledged people are just plain idiots for building houses on dry fire-prone hillsides, but people are idiots (often it seems in direct proportion to the money they have to burn) and people enjoy pretty views, so the houses go up, then they burn down, then they go up again. These Colorado fires that burn so few structures (comparatively) per acre burned are amazing in how little damage they seem to do, watershed issues aside. The closer one chooses to place a structure into any form of nature, the more likely such a structure is to be impacted and at times destroyed by said nature. Everyone recognizes the risk/reward. All of this is so embarrassingly obvious.

Prayers and thanks to the firefighters out there, protecting "our" private property rights, regardless of whether "our" decisions are sensible or not.
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