As wildfires rage in the West, scientists see conditions worsening in future decades
When lightning struck Saturday in the foothills of the Colorado Rockies, 15 miles northwest of Fort Collins, conditions could hardly have been better for the wildfire that ensued. A dry winter and warm spring had left Roosevelt National Forest tinder dry, and strong, erratic winds whipping up from the southeast carried the flames easily through the pine trees. Despite their severity, the High Park fire, as it has been named, and another, even more extensive fire in New Mexico are probably just the first blush of the year's fire season. Officials are bracing for more such blazes, particularly in the western parts of Rockies, where, they say, conditions are even drier.