Aug 4, 2015

Rocky Fire: Drought-fueled fire we've been dreading burns 62,000 acres and counting

Wilbur Springs, CA
USA
by
Julia Prodis Sulek
,
Mercury News
A backfire to head off the Rocky Fire glows on August 3, 2015 near Clearlake, California. Image: Justin Sullivan, Getty Images
A backfire to head off the Rocky Fire glows on August 3, 2015 near Clearlake, California. Image: Justin Sullivan, Getty Images

This is the blaze that firefighters have braced for all year, the ferocious Rocky Fire burning near Clear Lake that has destroyed more than two dozen homes and hit with the kind of force long-dreaded because of California's historic drought...Throughout California's forests, vegetation is so dry and so dense that flying embers, which in wetter years would fizzle out, are igniting at the mere touch of grass or shrub. As one UC Berkeley scientist who studies the Sierra puts it, the forests "are primed and ready to go."