to the editor from this week's Chronicle:
To the Editor
To the editor
The 1910 forest fires have been in the news a lot lately and I've learned a bunch: After thousands of years of "natural fires" the largest fires in our history occurred which resulted in the creation of the United States Forest Service. For the next 80-90 years their goal was to have every fire out by 10am the morning after it was discovered. At the same time forests were logged and managed for timber and fire was the enemy. Fires were extinguished when they were small and there were not many large ones. Good work, Smokey!
But then they thought, "We've done too well and there's a lot of fuel out there just waiting to burn. We could have some really big fires." So they stopped putting out the little fires and guess what? They got really big fires. Remember the Yellowstone Park fire of 1988? It started out small and was let burn.
The "natural" way still works just like it did in 1910. We can do better. Put the fires out by 10am and get loggers back in the woods. Maybe we could learn something from the 1910 devastation. Sometimes man can improve on nature.
Kooskia, ID 83539