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Updated:  02-Sep-2013 15:57

Teton Interagency Area Outlooks

Eastern Great Basin Outlooks

North American Seasonal Assessment

Current Teton Interagency Fire Outlook

Summary (updated September 2, 2013)

(Note: the tabs to the right provide supporting graphs and details for the Current Outlook.)

Heat spells and long-term drought continued to impact the West through August, including the TIDC area. Summer conditions that were warmer and drier than normal were moderated by monsoon moisture that periodically reached the TIDC area from the Southwest. While the Moose weather station received 50% of normal summer precipitation, most areas of the TIDC received widely scattered rains, with a number of RAWS sites receiving nearly an inch a rain in a day. The effect of this periodic moisture and higher humidity was a below average fire season to date, with normal fire activity forecast for the remaining fire season.

Key Points

  • FUELS > Live fuels exhibit late-season curing, with moderation due to variable precipitation. Fuels in sagebrush remain at critical fuel trigger levels.
  • FUELS > Fuel moistures in fine dead fuels (dead grass/thatch and twig-size) and heavy downed logs were both moderated by August precipitation. Fine dead fuel will likely return to critical levels while the heavier dead fuels will require a substantial fall drying trend to reach critical levels
  • WEATHER > Scattered thunderstorms in August brought variable moisture and lightning-ignited fires. The timing and amount of precipitation moderated fire spread in most cases.
  • WEATHER > The September outlook for above-normal temperatures and equal chances of below normal, above normal or normal precipitation may extend fire activity past the season-slowing event typically experienced in late August or early September.
  • STAFFING > Fire activity nationally has moderated after a very active August, when a national preparedness level of 5 was reached for the first time since 2008.
  • SUMMARY > The September regional outlook calls for warmer than normal temperatures and normal precipitation, which will likely support normal fire activity in the TIDC. Out of season conditions are expected to be within the normal range.