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| Earth on Jun 28, 2013

Colorado Black Forest fire burn scar

The June 2013 Black Forest fire was the most destructive in Colorado’s history.

The June 2013 Black Forest fire was the most destructive in Colorado’s history. The fire charred more than 14,000 acres, killed two people, destroyed 509 homes, and devastated a wooded suburb of Colorado Springs.

Astronaut’s view of Colorado fires

This image of the Black Forest fire’s burn scar was acquired by NASA’s Terra satellite on June 21, 2013. Vegetation-covered land is red in the false-color image, which includes both visible and infrared light. Patches of unburned forest are bright red. Unburned grasslands are pink. The darkest gray and black areas are the most severely burned. Buildings, roads, and other developed areas appear light gray and white.

See larger images  Image credit: NASA

See larger image Image credit: NASA

The most severe damage occurred north of Shoup Road, but the severity varied widely by neighborhood. Cathedral Pines, for instance, escaped largely unscathed. Many residents of that neighborhood put rocks around their homes, removed vegetation and dead trees from their yards, avoided using mulch, and followed other fire prevention strategies that helped keep flames back long enough for fighters to save homes, the Denver Post reported.

One key building that escaped the flames was Edith Wolford elementary school. Though it was in the middle of an area that was severely burned, the school survived intact partly because of the large, treeless parking lot surrounding it.

Photo credit: Great Basin National Incident Management Team

Photo credit: Great Basin National Incident Management Team

This photograph, taken on June 20, shows a charred section of Black Forest.

Bottom line: This image of the Black Forest fire’s burn scar was acquired by NASA’s Terra satellite on June 21, 2013. The June 2013 Black Forest fire was the most destructive in Colorado’s history. The fire charred more than 14,000 acres, killed two people, destroyed 509 homes, and devastated a wooded suburb of Colorado Springs.

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