Rim Fire

Take a tour of the Rim Fire in your own car!  The USFS has launched the Rim Fire Audio-Driving Tour in memory of the 2nd anniversary of this wildland fire.  You can dowload the free mp3 files at:  http://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/stanislaus/home/  An interpretive flyer and map will help guide you along the tour and is available on the website.  The 11-stop tour begins at the Groveland Ranger District Office and heads up Highway 120 towards Yosemite National Park.  It then veers down the Evergreen Road where more of the burned area can be seen. 

The tour was created to help tell the story of the fire and the recovery effort that has been happening since.  Though it is not possible to tell the whole story of this 257,314 acre fire in less than 2 hours, the main issues are highlighted.  You will also hear the story from many of the people who were on the fire from ground zero, so the tour truly represents the voice of the forest. 

A bit about the Rim Fire:  The 402-square-miles of burned landscape within the 2013 Rim Fire contain a wide range of intensity and impacts from the massive fire.  See the Rim Fire film The Fire Next Time.

For more information, visit USFS Rim Fire Recovery.

Rim Fire Picture 1

More than 98,000 acres burned so hot that nearly all the trees were killed and almost all of the lower level vegetation was incinerated.

Rim Fire Picture 2

Stream corridors were greatly degraded.

Rim Fire Picture 3

Despite highly effective watershed protection efforts by the Forest Service immediately after the fire, some denuded hillsides affected by sudden summer thunderstorms this year poured sediment downslope into receiving streams.

Rim Fire Picture 4

Scientists and fire specialists with the Forest Service have strongly agreed that there is a pressing need for removal of a considerable amount of the dead trees that now blanket so many thousands of acres within the fire. Accordingly, YSS has supported hazard tree removal treatments along forest roads in order to reduce the risk to public safety and to also make use of the dead wood while it still has value at local mills.

Rim Fire Picture 5

YSS has also supported a Forest Service plan that approved salvage logging treatments in selected units within the fire where removal of the dead trees will reduce the fuel build-up that would significantly increase the intensity of the next wildfire to sweep across this landscape.

In anticipation of the completion of salvage logging treatments, YSS is already enthusiastically partnering with the Forest Service to move forward with reforesation treatments (planting thousands of new conifer seedlings) and other landscape recovery treatments that will slowly transform the burned landscape into a mosaic of conifer forest, hardwoods, brushfields, and meadows once again.

Rim Fire Picture 6

Some vegetation (such as these ferns) regrow rapidly. Other vegetation may take extensive reforestation treatments and maintenance to assist the natural recovery. YSS is partnering with a wide range of funders and agencies in working for that vitally important recovery for this vast burned landscape.

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