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Old 04-14-2018, 12:13 AM
 
Location: CO/UT/AZ/NM Catch me if you can!
4,253 posts, read 3,951,390 times
Reputation: 9432

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From the Colorado Springs Gazette:

ENGLEWOOD - Friday's news from the governor and state wildland fire experts came as no surprise: Colorado faces a potentially devastating wildfire season.

Possibly, officials said, the worst since two of the state's most destructive - the 2012 Waldo Canyon fire, which burned 347 homes in Colorado Springs and killed two residents; and the 2013 Black Forest fire, which destroyed 489 homes and killed two people.

"With 63 percent of normal snowpack in southeast Colorado and into the headwaters of the Arkansas River drainage, there's heightened fire awareness," Gov. John Hickenlooper said at an annual wildfire outlook briefing at Centennial Airport in Englewood...

Other parts of the state are in worse shape, or "extreme drought conditions," officials said, including the San Miguel, Dolores, Animas and San Juan basin, with 36 percent of normal snow-water equivalent, and the Upper Rio Grande Valley, at 38 percent of normal, as of Thursday.

The state's core fire season, which normally runs from Memorial Day through Labor Day, could be extended and more extreme than usual, Hickenlooper said.


This means YOU, Colorado Springs and Pueblo! The news is even grimmer for the southwest portion of the state from Cortez/Durango to Telluride and Ouray. This past winter has been one of the driest on record in the San Juans and the La Platas, and we've had little relief from any spring rains with April (normally the best month for precip) now almost half over. Add in all the fuel readily available from the beetle-killed swaths of forest, and one of these summers my beloved San Juan Mountains are going to go up in flames. The question is only when, not if.

Some good news - The story in the Gazette goes on to describe proactive innovations and policies that have been implemented statewide - like according to Gov. Hickenlooper, Colorado is one of the only states to have Air Force firefighting forces at its call, to respond within the first hour of the initial start of a fire. Yes! Go, Air Force!

But we can all help to protect our beautiful state from the devastation of wildfire by paying heed to red flag warnings and clearing dead brush and slash from around our properties and near our homes. Doing these things would have done much to reduce or even prevent the awful 2013 Black Forest fire.

Have a great summer, everyone and BE CAREFUL OUT THERE!
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Old 04-14-2018, 10:22 AM
 
Location: Prairieville, La
34 posts, read 14,181 times
Reputation: 53
How is the second half of April looking for precipitation potential?
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Old 04-14-2018, 11:04 AM
 
Location: CO/UT/AZ/NM Catch me if you can!
4,253 posts, read 3,951,390 times
Reputation: 9432
Quote:
Originally Posted by SwampyNeedsMountains View Post
How is the second half of April looking for precipitation potential?
Not good. Southern Colorado is predicted to have only 33% to 40% of its normal precipitation through the end of April while temperatures are expected to be unusually warm. You can check out the maps and forecasts that are provided by the NOAA Climate Prediction Center for yourself. Read 'em and weep as the saying goes. At least northern Colorado has gotten normal precipitation and snow pack this winter, but the further south you go, the worse it gets.

The San Juans are in VERY bad shape. Storms that have come through and shed snow further north have been giving us nothing but high winds which only dry out the soils more and deposit dust on top the snowpack in our southern mountains. The dust is bad news because it lays on top of the snow in a dark layer which absorbs more of the sun's warmth and causes the snow to "sublime" (go directly from a frozen state to a gaseous one) and the water vapor caught in the upper atmosphere drops its rain further east instead of here in Colorado. The snow which melts into water is running off too fast to be normally absorbed by the soil or captured for use in our reservoirs.

Right now, agricultural officials are telling farmers in SW Colorado to expect only 77% of their normal irrigation allotments, and it may not even be that much.

It is a VERY bad year for us.
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Old 04-14-2018, 11:11 AM
 
Location: Colorado
703 posts, read 442,643 times
Reputation: 967
If folks would stop flicking their cigarette butts out of their cars on I-25 that would help. We've already had 2 grass fires near us because of this since January!
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Old 04-14-2018, 11:15 AM
 
Location: Colorado Springs
4,329 posts, read 4,350,986 times
Reputation: 15262
Quote:
Originally Posted by DoodlemomCoS View Post
If folks would stop flicking their cigarette butts out of their cars on I-25 that would help. We've already had 2 grass fires near us because of this since January!
You can't fix Stupid.
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Old 04-14-2018, 11:54 AM
 
Location: Prairieville, La
34 posts, read 14,181 times
Reputation: 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Colorado Rambler View Post
Not good. Southern Colorado is predicted to have only 33% to 40% of its normal precipitation through the end of April while temperatures are expected to be unusually warm. You can check out the maps and forecasts that are provided by the NOAA Climate Prediction Center for yourself. Read 'em and weep as the saying goes. At least northern Colorado has gotten normal precipitation and snow pack this winter, but the further south you go, the worse it gets.

The San Juans are in VERY bad shape. Storms that have come through and shed snow further north have been giving us nothing but high winds which only dry out the soils more and deposit dust on top the snowpack in our southern mountains. The dust is bad news because it lays on top of the snow in a dark layer which absorbs more of the sun's warmth and causes the snow to "sublime" (go directly from a frozen state to a gaseous one) and the water vapor caught in the upper atmosphere drops its rain further east instead of here in Colorado. The snow which melts into water is running off too fast to be normally absorbed by the soil or captured for use in our reservoirs.

Right now, agricultural officials are telling farmers in SW Colorado to expect only 77% of their normal irrigation allotments, and it may not even be that much.

It is a VERY bad year for us.
That's rough. Tough spot to be in. Enjoyed reading the article and how the state is attempting to combat wildfires - I was seriously impressed!!! Trying to be glass half full guy here
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Old 04-14-2018, 12:00 PM
 
161 posts, read 73,617 times
Reputation: 627
Quote:
Originally Posted by DoodlemomCoS View Post
If folks would stop flicking their cigarette butts out of their cars on I-25 that would help. We've already had 2 grass fires near us because of this since January!
I guess they don't consider their cigarette butts as littering because when they start a wildfire, everything is burned up.
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Old 04-14-2018, 12:09 PM
 
Location: CO/UT/AZ/NM Catch me if you can!
4,253 posts, read 3,951,390 times
Reputation: 9432
Quote:
Originally Posted by SwampyNeedsMountains View Post
That's rough. Tough spot to be in. Enjoyed reading the article and how the state is attempting to combat wildfires - I was seriously impressed!!! Trying to be glass half full guy here
Be prepared for the worst while hoping for the best is my motto.

And people who throw cigarettes out of cars should be subject to some serious fines. Hit 'em with a ticket for a $1,000 bucks and maybe then they'd think twice.
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Old 04-14-2018, 01:24 PM
 
1,377 posts, read 2,620,169 times
Reputation: 1668
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vision67 View Post
You can't fix Stupid.
Their higher self-inflicted attrition rate helps, but not enough.
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Old 04-14-2018, 01:37 PM
 
Location: Southern Colorado
2,929 posts, read 1,431,283 times
Reputation: 3918
So.....2/3rds of the normal snowfall. Does anybody know how rare, or common, that may be?

I would have thought that spring and summer rainfall and temperature would be more important factors.
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