“The human brain records visual
information spatially across the neural net of the cerebral cortex.
No wonder we like maps so much. Maps display information the same way
that our brains do.”
– nobody famous
If a picture is worth a thousand words,
a map is worth a million. Bookmark this page for instant access
to the best on-line maps available. We’ll make sure that our
map selections are up to date to keep you informed throughout the
Every aspect of wildfire has a corresponding map. Maps make finding
information easy, but a lot depends upon finding the right map.
National fire incident maps show all the
hot spots at once. Regional fire maps give more specific information
and some have zoom features that show local topography.
The Predictive Service Section of The National Interagency
Coordination Center in Boise, Idaho publishes risk
assessment maps, including the National Wildland Fire Seasonal
Weather maps are useful during fire season
for predicting winds and precipitation. Drought maps show long term
information about areas receiving above or below normal precipitation.
Lighting maps show areas where lightning ignitions in forests are
Useful information comes to light by using maps in combination.
Fire location, winds, precipitation, forest types, and topography
(slopes and elevations) together help predict fire behavior. Decisions
about how and whether to fight wildfires comes largely from studying
and interpreting maps. In worst-case scenarios maps help determine
Maps showing boundaries between management districts determine
how fire related resources are allocated. Maps of wildland-urban
interface areas help in developing treatments to protect homes and
Maps detailing vegetation types, old growth areas, tree densities,
canopy closure, wildlife habitat and other factors help forest professionals
order priorities for prescribed burns, thinning, or other treatments.
Geographic Information Systems (GIS) provides
powerful mapping tools that create digital overlays allowing various
combinations and correlations of data.
In the aftermath of wildfire, burn severity maps contribute to
Burned Area Emergency Rehabilitation (BAER) reports and plans. Fire
progression maps are studied to learn more about fire behavior and
to assess the effectiveness of fire containment efforts.
on thumbnails below to link to latest maps online
US Forest Service Fire Danger Risk
US Forest Service Large Wildland Fire Location
Map for Arizona and New Mexico
National Fire Weather Forecasts from NOAA
National Wildfire Coordination Group. 2003. "Colorado Wildfires:
Up to date information on current wildfires in Colorado by U.S. Forest
U.S. Geological Survey. Western
Wildfire information. 4/17/03. USGS map zooms
in on fire events in Western states and shows topography.
U.S.D.A. Forest Service Region 3. Southwest
Area Large Wildland Fire Location Map. 4/17/03. Fires
over 100 acres burning in Arizona, New Mexico and West Texas.
U.S.D.A. Forest Service. Fire Mapper. Rapid
Response Fire Maps. 4/17/03. National Large
Incident - Wildfires of 100 acres or more occurring in timber, or 300
acres or more occurring in grass/sage.
National Weather Service. National
Fire Weather. 4/17/03. National fire weather
forecasts, offices and outlooks.
National Interagency Coordination Center. National
Wildland Fire Outlook. 5/5/03. Latest national fire prediction maps.
U.S.D.A. Forest Service. Wildland
Fire Assessment System. 4/17/03.
National Fire Danger – Current fire danger
classification and fire locations.
Other map resources
High Performance Database Research Center. TerraFly.
4/21/03. An interactive "fly-over" application
designed to aid in the dissemination and visualization of geospatial data
via the Internet.
Maps a la carte Inc. TopoZone.
4/21/03. Provides recreational and professional
topographic maps online. TopoZone has worked with the USGS to create the
Web's first interactive topo map of the entire United States.
Mapping Information Home Page. 4/21/03. Contains
many links to various kinds of mapping information -- both to USGS maps
as well as mapping applications created by other organizations.
Map Viewer. 4/21/03. Provides web-based access
to layered map data within the coterminus U.S., Alaska and Hawaii. Through
a web browser the user can zoom, pan, add layers, remove layers and print
U.S.G.S. EROS Data
Center. 4/21/03. Uses satellite data to map
national and international land masses, to analyze trends in land cover,
and to provide applications assistance.
New National Atlas. 4/21/03. Designed to stimulate
children and adults to visualize and understand complex relationships
between environments, places, and people. It delivers easy to use, map-like
views of America's natural and sociocultural landscapes.
4/21/03. Terrestrial Remote Sensing (TRS) products
to help generate information and data that can be used by various fields
and disciplines for research, mapping, exploration, and education.
June 6, 2003
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