According to the US Forest Service, there are currently 105 large active fires burning in the United States this week and, no surprise, a large percentage of them are concentrated along the West Coast, where years of drought have been steadily whittling away local forests' ability to stave off big burns.
Esri, a California-based provider of Geographic Information System (GIS) mapping software, has put together a live map of every active wildfire in the Continental U.S., which you can peruse through above–giving you info. on fire size and location, the date each started, and even layering in Youtube videos and Flickr photos from folks on the ground.
Wildfire forecasters are calling for above average fire activity in the Pacific Northwest and in central and southern California through the rest of the summer, although forecasters are hoping that the strengthening El Niño pattern will start bringing bursts of moisture to the West Coast as the fall closes in.
China has canceled their Everest climbing season, and Nepal's situation around COVID-19 is deteriorating rapidly. | Wikipedia photo. This year’s mountaineering season on Everest seems to be about two separate stories, one of extremely limited access to the Chinese side of the mountain, and one of the typical crowds on the Nepalese side. China has now officially canceled mountaineering access to the north, largely as a precaution against a raging COVID-19 outbreak in the Nepalese base camp.
Fact: Climbing is a popular sport. And it’s gotten even more popular during the COVID-19 pandemic. In places like Yosemite, the mecca of North American big wall climbing, that popularity has led to ever-increasing amounts of climbers on multi-day routes like those on El Cap or Half Dome. In response to those growing crowds, and the impact they have on the walls they climb (read: leaving poop and gear on routes) the National Park Service is testing out a new system requiring all overnight
Are bikes in wilderness areas a good idea? Utah Senator Mike Lee seems to think so. | Max Ritter photo. Senator Mike Lee (R-UT) reintroduced the Human-Powered Travel in Wilderness Areas Act last week, a bill that would empower local managers of wilderness areas to decide whether to allow and how to regulate non-motorized travel in wilderness areas. In other words, this is a big step in the direction of potentially letting mountain bikers ride in wilderness areas. Currently, The Wilderness