What Comes After the Fire?

Well, deer.

Note the sagebrush above the burn line.

Here’s what all that looked like a few days after the fire 9 1/2 years ago.

The image below shows that fire retardant stopped the fire. Note the red chemical line.

You can see that line below now, here, right along the fence line near the top of the image.

Here’s what it all looked like nine months after the fire:

Not a disaster. The following image shows the disaster:

That’s a section of overgrazed grassland on the same slope, given over to sagebrush. Deer avoid it. Birds avoid it. It’s a desert. It’ll also burn like open cans of gasoline. Will planes laying down fire retardant help us this time? The image below, minus the impact of heavy machinery, is closer to what this land once looked like, when it burned every 10-15 years, when fire was not to be feared and was not a threat but a giver of life.

The time to burn is now. August is a dangerous time to play with that stuff. Here’s a pic from August 2012, the day after the fire.

Sagebrush’s role here is to invite and spread fire. Everyone, we are not helpless. There are things we can easily do. So, what comes after the fire? Why, hope.

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