New High Impact Wildfires Breaking Out Across The Region

The National Weather Service
Building a Weather-Ready Nation


Summary | Forecast | Monitoring & Reporting | Safety

 

The kids have gone back to school, the nights are getting longer and colder, but that certainly does not mean that fire season is over! Drought-ravaged Wyoming forests and grasses are still very receptive to fire, and the weather conditions are also doing their part to encourage new wildfires to quickly grow out of control. It was extremely dry and quite windy on Sunday, which caused the fire near Jackson Hole, called the "Little Horse Thief Fire", and the fire on Casper Mountain, called the "Sheep Herder Hill Fire" to grow at an alarming pace. Red Flag Warnings have also been posted for Monday due to continued dry and windy conditions near the Sheep Herder Fire with dry thunderstorms and strong outflow winds possible on Monday afternoon. Similarly, there could be dry thunderstorms at the Little Horse Thief Fire tomorrow as well, but the relative humidity will be slightly higher.

 

 

 

CLICK IMAGE TO ENLARGE

The above image shows the  forecast minimum relative humidity for Monday - it will be extremely dry across the Northeastern half of the forecast area, with slightly higer relative humidity across the rest of the state. However, the higher moisture content will encourage dry thunderstorm formation, which could cause new fires to start.

 

CLICK LOOP TO ENLARGE

The loop above shows the wind forecast from Sunday through Monday evening in 3 hour time steps. The stronger wind speeds are highlighted in the light green shades. As the loop shows, the strong winds will continue over the higher elevations overnight into Monday with even more widespread strong wind expected on Monday during the day.

The time stamp is in the bottom right hand corner in Zulu Time. (Remember, that wind barbs show the direction from which the wind is coming)

 

The National Weather Service in Riverton has been providing decision support services for the fires in the map depicted below.

 

CLICK IMAGE TO ENLARGE

The above image shows the locations of the currently active fires across our area of responsibility for which we are providing decision support services.

 

The more active fires have been showing up on the "Fog Band" of the GOES West satellite today. Some smoke plumes can be seen on the visible satellite, but they were quickly obscured by clouds in some instances.

Fire Detections On Satellite - Sunday, September 09, 2012
   
 

CLICK IMAGE TO ENLARGE

The above image shows the Sunday afternoon fire detections on satellite, with the active fires circled in red.

 

CLICK IMAGE TO ENLARGE

The above satellite loop shows the fire detections on the fog band of the GOES West satellite. The animated image makes it easier to differentiate between clouds and fires (circled in red in the image to the left)

 

POES 11u-3.7u Satellite Image from 10PM Sunday Night
This image shows the locations where the satellite has detected very hot surface temperatures - Centered on the Sheep Herder Hill Fire. The hottest temperatures are represented by the black pixels with the very warm temperatures shown by the white pixels. The major roads and interstates were included for reference and they are shown in red.

 

POES 11u-3.7u Satellite Image from 10PM Sunday Night

This image shows the locations where the satellite has detected very hot surface temperatures - Centered on the Little Horse Thief Fire. The hottest temperatures are represented by the black pixels with the very warm temperatures shown by the white pixels. The major roads and interstates were included for reference and they are shown in red.


Please do your part to help out the local folks who are trying to fight these fires - don't start any new ones, stay out of the way, obey evacuation orders and road closures, and please do not continue to report the fires that are already known. It is beginning to tax the 911 system. However, if you see a fire outside of the boundaries of the fires that are already known, then go ahead and contact your local emergency number or call 911.

Feel free to ask us questions or post pictures of the fires and smoke on our Facebook page.

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