Sequoia Complex Fire nearing giant sequoia grove

Fire is now a mile away from the Freeman Creek grove

We’re continuing to closely monitor the Sequoia Complex Fire in the Sequoia National Forest. As of right now, it appears the fire has started to move west, and is now about a mile away from the Freeman Creek giant sequoia grove. This is a unique grove in that it’s the highest elevation grove, and it also is one of the few in the monument that never had logging in it. It’s also a site where our Redwoods and Climate Change Initiative is working. Here’s the latest map:

castle fire map

Unlike their coast redwood cousins, giant sequoia lack the ability to sprout after fire, so a severe wildfire can outright kill these ancient trees. If a grove has been treated with prescribed burns to reduce fuel buildup and restore fire resilience, then we would not worry about wildfire burning into the grove. It could even be healthy for these fire-adapted trees. But where fire exclusion continues and there is over 100 years of fuels built up, a fire in the hot and dry part of the summer could burn too hot, and kill many of the ancient monarchs. We’re currently researching a case where this happened in the Black Mountain Grove,

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Since 1918, Save the Redwoods League has protected and restored redwood forests and connected people with their peace and beauty so these wonders of the natural world flourish.

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2 Responses to “Sequoia Complex Fire nearing giant sequoia grove”

  1. Kevin van der Meer

    Any updates? Looking at maps it seems like the Castle fire has burned through several Giant Sequoia Groves including the Alder Grove, Mountain Home, and the Garfield Groves.

  2. Mike Nicholas

    The Castle Fire is now burning in the Freeman Creek Grove (9/8/2020). According to Firefighters, the Bush Tree has been burned around with very little damage. The Fire is burning into the Grove as a ground fire with moderate intensity and slower rates of spread. Sounds like the goal is to allow the fire to burn strips as a ground fire backing through the Grove with low intensity spread. Source: Evening Briefing for the Incident: 9/8/2020 @6:00 PM.


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