The TRENDS podcast is a collaboration between the Community Foundation of Boulder County and KGNU. It dives deep into the community’s most pressing issues and explores the changes happening throughout Boulder County through the experiences of community members, especially those often rendered invisible by commercial media, to shed light on community challenges, solutions, and pathways forward for the county and the country.
The Cal-Wood fire, from almost exactly one year ago, would eventually enter the history books as the largest ever recorded in Boulder County and the fifth costliest in Colorado. Aided by strong down-sloping winds, with gusts up to 60 miles-per-hour, the fire, which started around noon on October 17th, would spread at a rate of 35 acres per minute during its first three hours, and would end up causing damage to more than 10 thousand acres of land. Over 30% of the affected area sits on National Forest land.
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The TRENDS Podcast series is made possible with support from the KGNU Listener-Members and the Community Foundation for Boulder County.
Aside from the damage caused to homes and other structures, the fire had terrible effects on the environment and the wildlife that inhabits the national forest land. While many large animals had to be sheltered elsewhere during the fire, there are countless smaller species that are, and will probably forever be unaccounted for. As a result, many educational and scientific projects were affected as well.
Now, a year later almost to the day, we can reflect on the consequences of these fires. While the cause of the Cal-Wood fire is undetermined, we can be sure that longer, hotter summers will only increase the probability of more fires.