National Park Service’s fire program

The National Park Service has recently taken three steps that put their fire program, both structural and wildland, more into the public eye.

One is their Wildland Fire Newsletter.

National Park Service wildland fire newsletter

The most recent edition of the newsletter is a 10-page pdf document. Initially it was only posted on the NPS’ internal web site, but Wildfire Today received permission to make it available to the public. It can be downloaded HERE, but be aware that it is a large 1.2 MB file. This edition is dedicated to wildland fire planning, which is perhaps not the favorite activity of wildland fire managers, but is becoming increasingly important as we move more fully into interagency collaboration for planning, budgeting, fuels management, and fire suppression.

Jun Kinoshita
Jun Kinoshita. NPS Photo

The second public face of the NPS fire program that caught my eye is a blog. Yes, apparently at some point everyone will have a blog… or two. This one is hosted not on an internal NPS computer system, but is on Google’s very public Blogspot. It is titled NPS Fire and Aviation Blog and so far all of the posts have been written by Jun Kinoshita, an archeologist for Yosemite National Park’s fire management program who is on a detail, going through rookie smokejumper training at Missoula.

And thirdly, the NPS is posting fire related photos to Google’s Picassa Web Albums where they have about 50 excellent photos of fire program activities from around the country. Here are some examples.

Yosemite fire
Yosemite National Park, California - Yosemite Valley prescribed fire, Meced River and moon. NPS photo by Isaiah Hirschfield.

Quite a few National Park Service sites are in very remote locations and not only have a widfire program, but they also have a structural fire department. Below is an example from Glen Canyon National Recreation Area (Lake Powell), but even Badlands National Park recently started a structural fire program.

Glen Canyon fire training
Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Arizona, Utah - structural fire training. NPS photo by Tom Haraden.

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Author: Bill Gabbert

After working full time in wildland fire for 33 years, he continues to learn, and strives to be a Student of Fire.