In partnership with scientists and managers, we produce and sponsor videos to share information about specific topics in support of fire and fuels management.
For the USDA Forest Service, wilderness fire management began in the Northern Rockies. Explore the history of wilderness fire management through nationally significant case studies in the Selway Bitterroot Wilderness, Glacier and Yellowstone National Parks, and the Bob Marshall Wilderness Complex. Hear interviews from retirees Orville Daniels, Dick Bahr, and Laurie Kurth, and scientist Mark Finney, who use the Bad Luck (1972), Canyon Creek (1988), Yellowstone (1988) and Howling (1994) fires to share lessons learned and describe how these fires shaped fire use and national fire policy.
Lessons learned from wilderness fire management in the Northern Rockies. Intended to spark discussion about managing fire for resource benefit on public lands: including reasons behind using this management approach; factors that influence the ability to do so; resources and steps that support fire for resource benefit; considerations to keep in mind; and other wisdom from experts. This video is not intended to provide solutions to every issue, but to catalyze conversation.
After considerable planning and partnership, the Payette National Forest is leading the way in landscape-scale controlled burns. These burns aim to enhance important plant and animal habitat and reduce the risk of future wildfires to the surrounding communities. This short video outlines the process used to complete these landscape-scale burns. Funding for this video came from the Northern Rockies Fire Science Network and the interagency Joint Fire Science Program.
Video on wilderness fire management in Forest Service (9 min)
Carol Miller (Research Ecologist, U.S. Forest Service Rocky Mountain Research Station, Aldo Leopold Wilderness Research Institute) highlighted recent research that uses a climate analog approach to model potential vegetation and fire regime shifts with a changing climate. Vegetation is expected to shift toward vegetation associated with warmer climate, and fire regime shifts depend on the bioclimatic environment. Caveats and assumptions of the research are noted, and the direction of change is emphasized rather than magnitude and timing (19:26 minutes).
Resilience Mechanisms and Fire-driven Tipping Points in the Forests of the Eastern Continental Divide
Cameron Naficy (Postdoctoral Research Scientist, Forest and Conservation Sciences, University of British Columbia) addressed ecological dynamics and resilience mechanisms in mixed-severity fire regime ecosystems and characterized changes in fire regime and landscape vegetation along a gradient of fire frequencies (20:46 minutes).
Erin Noonan-Wright (Fire Applications Specialist, U.S. Forest Service Wildland Fire Management Research, Development, & Applications) discussed how land managers make decisions on wildland fires, how they make an initial assessment of risk, how risk is different spatially for the U.S., focusing on 3 geographic areas, and what the role of barriers is in the Southwest and how they affect flexibility in decision-making (16:36 minutes).
Debbie Page-Dumroese (Research Soil Scientist, U.S. Forest Service Rocky Mountain Research Station) addressed forest management implications for increased soil carbon and water-holding capacity in soils after wildfire and prescribed fire (16:49 minutes).
Sarah McCaffrey (Social Scientist, U.S. Forest Service Rocky Mountain Research Station) discussed the results of studies addressing internal barriers to the use of large-scale fire for forest restoration. In addition to identifying three cross-cutting themes regarding internal needs and priorities, the studies also provide new insights on public response to fire management (21:35 minutes).
The 2016 lightning-caused Berry Fire was the largest fire on record for Grand Teton National Park. This video, by videographer Peri Sasnett, highlights the challenges managers face in balancing ecological benefits of fire with the human inconvenience fire can cause on public lands and in nearby communities. Dramatic footage of the fire burning contrasts with lodgepole seedlings sprouting and wildlife foraging in the burned area one year later. Viewers will hear commentary from park staff and scientists about how the Berry Fire was managed, and what made this fire so unusual.
We also maintain a broad Northern Rockies-relevant Webinars and Recorded Media Database that can be searched by presenter, date, topic, and ecosystem.
Video recordings of presentations made during NRFSN-hosted workshops and field trips can be accessed through the following past event pages:
- Wilderness Fire Management: Easier Now or Later? (2019)
- Whitebark Pine Ecosystem Foundation Science and Management Workshop (2016)
- Learning from a Legacy of Wilderness Fire In the Bob Marshall Wilderness Complex (2016)
- Fires of 2000: Revisiting Social, Political, and Ecological Issues (2014)
- Fire Effects Field Trip with Dick Hutto (2014)