#CarrFire in Northern California so big it is making it’s own weather

Video of a “fire tornado” follows. My friend Kris Kuyper writes on Facebook:

BIG Pyrocumulus clouds now forming above the smoke plume of the #CarrFire!
The dirty part on the bottom is the smoke plume rising from the fire. The intense heating from this rising plume eventually reaches a level in the atmosphere where it can form a cumulus cloud, that’s the white part on top. It’s called a Pyrocumulus Cloud.

Pyrocumulous cloud from the Carr fire Photo taken by Jim Mackensen.

Using Doppler radar, he notes; Tops of the Pyrocumulus cloud over the #CarrFire are now up to 32,000’!

Here is a video of a heat vortex from the Carr Fire. It looks like a tornado, but isn’t. It’s the same mechanism as dust devils and fire whirls that creates this rotating inferno.

Skip Murphy of Redding took this video and writes on Facebook:

In case you were wondering what a fire tornado looks like, this is from Rocky Point School off Lake Blvd. yesterday. No audio, but it sounds like a freight train, punctuated with explosions. Never seen anything like it. At the end of this was when I suddenly realized “Run, fool!” We are fine with friends in Cottonwood (Thanks Craig and Colleen!). Not sure about the house. Prayers upon prayers for our community, and our very brave first responders and firefighters.

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Ivor Ward
July 28, 2018 6:02 am

That is way way scary.

July 28, 2018 6:03 am

men caused this fire…nature does not plan for fires..
Lodgepole Pine Trees Love Forest Fires | A Moment of …

Reply to  embutler
July 28, 2018 6:24 am

Nature absolutely plans for fires! Lightening starts most of them and forests regenerate more healthy as a result.

John F. Hultquist
Reply to  Happytohelp
July 28, 2018 9:08 am

H-2-H writes” Lightening starts most of them . . .

Lightning is a natural cause of fire, but in the USA about 84% of wildfire is related to or directly set by humans. Fires start from such things as car roll-overs, bad wiring, burning a pile of brush, camp fires, fire-crackers, or simple arson. See: Sleepy Hollow Fire

[?? .mod]

Reply to  John F. Hultquist
July 28, 2018 11:16 am


Reply to  Pouncekitty
July 28, 2018 1:39 pm

Seriously?? Just ‘Wrong’ with no data or evidence to back it up? How persuasive!

Reply to  Mark
July 28, 2018 11:39 pm

Where’s YOUR data or evidence? I say 100% of wildfires are caused by masturbation. Prove me wrong.

Reply to  John F. Hultquist
July 28, 2018 11:50 am

Not even close. One moderate storm in a dry region can create dozens, even hundreds of fires. Humans biggest add to fires is that they protect forests which create a bigger fuels risk. There are always thousands of fires 24/7, a small per cent are human created.

Reply to  Poems of Our Climate
July 28, 2018 12:12 pm

Wrong! Common sense would indicate … if your proposition were true … there would have been NO FORESTS left when the white man first showed up in the West. The OPPOSITE was true … massive stands of DENSE, old-growth forests everywhere. If hundreds lightening strike fires occur repeatedly … then WHY weren’t the forests already wiped out when the white man showed up? And your nonsense of the forests becoming too dense because of the white man’s protection just doesn’t cut it.

If what you say is true, that our forest management is causing these huge fires … then we should be clearing our forests to test the theory … then start a fire to “prove” your point that … “fire is natural and healthy”. Just because a “theory” is taught for decades in our Natural Resources (leftist) Universities … doesn’t make it true. That “science” isn’t even tested … let alone settled.

Reply to  Kenji
July 28, 2018 1:06 pm

there would have been NO FORESTS left when the white man first showed up in the west

You’re joking, right? I cannot imagine any sane person arguing that trees and forests never grow back after a fire.

In fact, some trees REQUIRE fire to spread their seeds.

For a little more info, please see –

Playing with Wildfire: 5 Amazing Adaptations of Pyrophytic Plants

Reply to  Kakarot
July 28, 2018 11:42 pm

WRONG. Trees and other organisms have evolved to deal with wildfires. To such an extent that many species REQUIRE fire in order to reproduce. Lodgepole pines, for example. The cones don’t open and release seeds without fire. Periodic fires are necessary for healthy forests. Modern forest management involves deliberately setting controlled fires if lightning doesn’t do the job.

Preventing all fire also causes undergrowth to get out of control, so when lightning DOES strike (as it always will eventually) the fire the results is catastrophic.

Jane Galt
Reply to  Kakarot
July 29, 2018 10:58 am

Yeah but I wanted to believe that the evil white man are to blame! Please, just tell me that it’s their fault!

Reply to  Kenji
July 28, 2018 1:21 pm

The older trees were more resistant to fires. Many had fire scars from multiple fires over the centuries in which they stood. Most of those old growth trees were finally logged off by the late 1970s. I know as I worked in the woods as a logger for much of the 1970s, and saw the last of the old growth trees go out on the back of logging trucks.

Back in those days there were too many clear cuts over the decades of intense logging between the late 1940s and the late 1970s. That left many heavy brush areas, or young trees packed too close together which then led to high fuel loads as compared to when the old growth trees ruled the forest.

Reply to  goldminor
July 28, 2018 6:42 pm

THAT … makes sense, and sounds right.

Bill Murphy
Reply to  Kenji
July 28, 2018 1:54 pm

RE: That “science” isn’t even tested … let alone settled.

Wrong. It’s thoroughly tested and as close to settled as anything can be. Natural and man caused (native American) fires kept the fuel loads low for centuries in North America. The low intensity fires in lightly loaded areas clear out the trash of grass, brush and litter (pine needles, etc) and cause little or no harm to established trees. Only when the forest gets cluttered and dense from over-suppression do fires “ladder up” into tree crowns and run amok. As for the “massive stands of DENSE, old-growth forests everywhere.” Photographs taken by early explorers in the 19th century clearly show much more open and less cluttered forest conditions than modern photographs of the same areas today. Native Americans were well aware of this and often set fires intentionally because it cleared and greened pasture for wildlife and livestock. They had an appreciation for fire and no fear of it. It was the arrival of settlers and timber companies in the 19th century that changed the West with their blanket assumption that all fire was bad. Modern forest managers attempt to return forests to more natural conditions using control burns and selective thinning of timber but face substantial opposition from all sides. Greens oppose ANY human intervention in the forests (totally unaware that humans have been altering the natural condition of the Western North American forests for thousands of years.) Meanwhile, towns and counties often oppose control burns due to the annoyance of smoke and the danger that a control burn will break out and become a wildfire, which can easily happen and which is often a career ending mistake for a forest manager. Also staging a successful control burn is hugely expensive and they are often denied due to budget constraints.
And RE: If what you say is true, that our forest management is causing these huge fires … then we should be clearing our forests to test the theory That has been done and is being done wherever possible and when possible, but the Western US is HUGE and the damage from over-suppression has been going on for over a century. Areas that have been successfully control burned do not have catastrophic fires. I have personally been involved in fighting large fires that have burned into past control burn areas and watched a raging inferno of 200-300 foot flames die off to a creeping ground fire when it got there. Plus many areas are so cluttered now that control burns are impossible, it would inevitably blow up into a major fire, so managers continue to suppress all fires aggressively and just hope that the inevitable eventual blow-up will wait until after they retire. Sometimes they are not that lucky.

Reply to  Bill Murphy
July 28, 2018 6:24 pm

What you say is definitively true. There are massive forests east of the Mississippi River, more acreage than in 1900, but rarely are there reported massive forest fires in the east, even in rural areas of the South and even during droughts. That is because eastern forests are managed by professional foresters, trees are harvested for paper and lumber manufacturing. Professional management applies to both the forests that are privately owned as well as public forests.

Western forests, owned by the federal government [the tragedy of the commons] are not cut down for timber, so the opportunity to create fire breaks is limited, are not subjected to periodic cleansing from controlled burns and the tendency is to restrict management, suppress fires and interfere with nature.

Reply to  Bill Murphy
July 28, 2018 6:32 pm

Well … you just said that the wonderful, thoughtful, eco centric, natives “had no fear of fire” (smh) and set fires to clear the underbrush of the vast western forests … one would think that modern Americans could handle the ‘experiment’ of testing the burn theory … without devastating our forests. Easily … as compared to the relatively small number of natives.

Bill Murphy
Reply to  Kenji
July 29, 2018 12:04 am

As I pointed out, that experiment has been and is being done every year, but nothing about it is “easy.” In the first place a good control burn requires a very narrow window of weather conditions: correct temp and RH range, correct wind velocity and direction and the correct fuel and soil moisture levels. If those are not correct then either the fire will not burn, will burn the wrong direction, or may blow up into an uncontrolled wildfire. The native Americans also did not have to contend with private property, cabins and sometimes even entire towns adjacent to or occasionally even inside the forest, nor did they have grazing leases to ranchers to deal with, nor timber leases to logging companies to worry about, nor did they have the EPA and the Clean Air Act ready to cite them for criminal negligence if anything went wrong. They also didn’t need a hundred or so firefighters standing by to start, monitor and control the fire and to dig the miles of fireline around the prescribed area in advance, nor were they required to have helicopters and air tankers on standby if things went nasty. And they didn’t have Greenpeace, WWF, Audubon Society as well as city councils and local HOAs and citizen groups filing injunctions, writing letters to newspapers and congressmen protesting the whole thing. And most important, the natives didn’t need to send a supplemental budget request for a million extra dollars to the bean counters in Washington and wonder if they had just ended any chance of promotion by doing so. They also did not have millions of acres of forest that had been mismanaged for over a century, large tracts of which are impossible to burn off controlled because many of the requirements above can simply not be met, or paid for. In any case, they were not necessarily “wonderful, thoughtful, eco centric” they just saw what nature was doing with her thousands of natural fires every year and occasionally helped her out because that helped them out. If they had all the same problems then, which their descendants on the reservations do now, they probably would have done what most managers do now: control burn or let burn whenever possible and aggressively fight all other fires and when the inevitable big blow-up happens, blame it on CAGW to protect your pension.

Reply to  Bill Murphy
July 29, 2018 10:45 am

Fair enough. I cannot disagree with much you wrote in this last bit … except the suggestion of the Native peoples being able to “control” fires to ONLY do positive things for game trails … and never cause a massive wasting of the forests. Same thing with historic lightening strike ignited fires. You would have me believe that in 100 years of the white man’s forest management practices … fires went from benign to catastrophic. That still doesn’t quite add up in my logical brain. However I don’t disagree with MOST of what you have so carefully laid out here, I am just increasingly annoyed by;
a) being HONEST about the ignition sources and frequency of them.
b) associating ANY human-ignited fire with global warming. The media need to start reporting-about and pursuing prosecution of all man-ignited fires. Drop the orthodoxy of AGW “causing” fires, and tell the truth. Start putting people in JAIL for torching our State.
c) driving through Yellowstone Park and seeing half the Park a charred wasteland (hardly the “cleansing” fire as described). And for all the photos depicting the fire-germination of desired forest species … I can show you photos of nothing but scrub undergrowth rapidly replacing old growth forests in the wake of fire. In an old growth, healthy forest, the dense tree canopy is a natural deterrent to scrub growth (limited sunlight) … however there is no such deterrent for these RAPIDLY GROWING junk species. It will take dozens of generations for the tree canopy to grow sufficiently to naturally control scrub growth again.
d) Solutions. So if (for all the reasons you cite above) we cannot “properly, naturally” manage the forests … then what are we to do? Be perpetually victimized? You have argued strongly for what you believe to be the problem, and then strongly argued for why we cannot solve the problem. I don’t believe that our civilization has arrived at this place in time because we don’t successfully solve problems. It seems to me that wildfires have … uh … what I will call … advocates. People whose self-interest; Every Global Warming True believer, CAL-Fire, Every State of CA eco-agency, Zero population proponents, urban limit liners, etc. is wrapped up in ever increasing fires consuming our State. It’s time to SOLVE the problem … and STOP using it to shill for your belief system.

Reply to  Kenji
July 29, 2018 2:32 pm

Honesty requires you to acknowledge your own lack of knowledge.

If you genuinely did have a “logical brain” you would accept that fuel and scrub build some up over far shorter periods than a century.

You would accept that scrub is only party of the equation, and that’s fuels include leaf litter and dead material from the dominant canopy species.

You would accept that man you scrub species have relatively short generations in comparison to dominant tree species. The key is not one burn, but MULTIPLE burns at relatively short intervals. The reduce scrub density requires fire to kill the regenerating scrub before it can re-seed. This reduces the seed bank.

Reply to  PeterW
July 31, 2018 12:22 pm

You will note that I have remained engaged in this discussion, so that I CAN learn what I don’t know. However, I am seeing very little of that open mindedness on the part of the “wildfire ignition true scrub believers”. Of course scrub species by their evolutionary growth rates (need to grow fast to compete with the large forest canopies) take less than a century to establish. But I still cannot ascribe the increasing rate of devastating mass wasting forest fires throughout CA to JUST this one issue. THAT does not make sense to my “logical brain”. I entered this discussion at the argument of the IGNITION SOURCE of these fires (are they 84% “natural” or 84% human-ignited?). How THAT appears to be of NO interest to the CA Fire-fighting bureaucracy … is frustrating to me. Why aren’t we seeing more arson prosecutions? Yes, I understand that it is difficult to solve such crimes in remote, unpopulated areas … yet I see no effort and no prosecutions whatsoever. Instead … thousands of articles, and the top of the DRUDGE report about every fire detail … EXCEPT … how/why it started, and what LEGAL responsibility is levied against the moron who dragged a massively sparking axle along the pavement far enough to ignite a wildfire? Something doesn’t sound quite right about that explanation … was the axle-dragger also a smoker? My “logical detective brain” asks this probing question. And then this moron does NOTHING to stop the fire he just started. I am weary of reading nonsensical stories about how “conditions” are tinder-dry, and “drought”, and global warming are making these fires “worse”. Hey! Guess what? It has ALWAYS been “tinder dry” and “hot as hell” EVERY summer in Redding. There is no difference between this year and any other year … except … for the monsoon-level rains and snow to blanket No. CA for the past 3-years (remember Oroville Dam?). So the “scrub” plant material has had a few GREAT years of growth. So, yes, there is a time and place for controlled burns … however … this whole nonsense about “natural” fires” being “good” for Yellowstone Park, by completely burning BARE ten thousand acres of the Park sticks in my “logical brain”. I want to know WHY our modern, sophisticated, scientific, culture cannot SOLVE this problem? It appears to me that too many people, too many agencies, and too many news outlets are addicted to a WILDFIRE CRISIS … to actually DO anything about it … except USE the CRISIS to shill for increased carbon taxation. In the manner of MY President DJT … I like to SOLVE problems, rather than punish the innocent, and endlessly TALK about them. So, if scrub plant material is THE problem … then fcuking solve it!! Run a definitive TEST for this practice. Pick a forest tract in CA … clear it “like the noble, smarter, more ecologically informed, native peoples” did. Then see if any more fires devastate this area again. And it seems to me if wildfires can be SOLVED via this method … then whatever the difficulties … it would be FAR CHEAPER to our societal cost and State budget to PREVENT these fires with “controlled” burns than do NOTHING preventatively. So run the experiment already … and then we will know that “people” have NOTHING to do with wildfires. Dum, dum, de, dum, dum, dumb … I’ll wait while you run the … uh, definitive … experiment.

Reply to  Bill Murphy
July 28, 2018 7:35 pm

I agree with you 100%. There was never a problem with fires in the forest until the controlled burns were stopped. We burn our marshes here and there is nothing that helps them more. We never have uncontrolled fires, but as eco Tom moves in I fear these burns will be stopped.

Reply to  Kenji
July 28, 2018 2:39 pm
Reply to  Kenji
July 29, 2018 7:50 pm

In God We Trust… all others bring data.

Common sense is not data or God.

Reply to  Kenji
July 29, 2018 9:35 pm

Wow. Racist much?

Reply to  Kenji
July 30, 2018 12:27 am

Natives set fires to clear land in nw

John F. Hultquist
Reply to  John F. Hultquist
July 28, 2018 12:30 pm
Reply to  John F. Hultquist
July 28, 2018 1:14 pm

The Carr fire was caused by a malfunction on someone’s vehicle.

Reply to  goldminor
July 28, 2018 6:38 pm

Which begs a question from me … if my own automobile ‘malfunctioned’ (what the hell does that mean?) … and started a fire in a wilderness area … I would be on my cell phone POST HASTE to every 911 agency … I would be standing my ground and doing everything possible to STOP this fire before it had the chance to spread … I would SCREAM at the Fire Stations to bring EVERYTHING they had to knock this fire down NOWWWW!!!

Is that how this ‘malfunction’ … and subsequent reporting took place? If not … then I consider it arson.

Reply to  Kenji
July 28, 2018 7:29 pm

My guess would be some of the low lifes that hang out in the mountains around here. There are not as many now since weed was legalized, and can be grown legally in many other counties in the state. Prior to the recent changes in the law there would be a stream of drifters every May/June into the area who would seek work on grows, or later on for the harvest.

The problem with that is that it would bring untrustworthy sorts into the community. As well as general idiots who had no clue how to keep their camps clean, or how to dig a hole for a latrine, or why you are not supposed to have a fire going during the fire season. Those are the most worrisome types.

Reply to  goldminor
July 29, 2018 10:53 am

That’s exactly what I suspect, goldminor. And the Sonoma fire was reported to have been caused by a homeless (read illegal alien) starting a fire to keep warm during 60mph winds (yeah … riiiight). But that story disappeared from the news pages … as soon as the Lawyers all jumped on the deep pockets of PG&E (read: ratepayers like me) as the “primary” source of the fires.

BTW … I have hiked many a river and stream in the Sierra (see, I even know the word Sierra is already plural) and come across hermit gold miners camps. I don’t recall, these men starting fires in the forests in which they lived. Mexican cartel dope growers on the other hand …

Jan Woods
Reply to  Kenji
July 28, 2018 9:41 pm

I thought the same thing Kenji– I agree.

L nelson
Reply to  Kenji
July 28, 2018 9:45 pm

Flat tire on trailer had nowhere to pull over Sparks on pavement started fire

Reply to  John F. Hultquist
July 28, 2018 2:36 pm


Reply to  John F. Hultquist
July 29, 2018 8:11 am

We here in Idaho have suffered many catastrophic forest fires because of the government’s policy of “prescribed burns” when they set fires and then let them get out of control. It is just stupidity that just repeats itself year after year. They are covering for immigrants who set fires in order to kill their neighbors also.

wade wolfe
Reply to  Happytohelp
July 28, 2018 5:38 pm

I once witnessed a glorious example of God’s engineering in the Everglades. This entire event was viewed with no physical obstructions from about 2 miles away. A storm blew through and ignited a fire and left. I could visually observe the fire grow in size by the minute. As it grew, alarge llume of smoke rose directly above it (no wind) and began to create clouds in an otherwise empty sky. The clouds began roiling and billowing upward at an ever increasing rate. Strsight up. The elevation continued to increase until the cloud could no longer hold the weight of it’s moisture. It then started POURING. A column of water. The fire was extinguished in 20 minutes. The cloud disappeared and there was no indication that it ever took place. All in 3 hours.

Dave Coleman
Reply to  wade wolfe
July 28, 2018 8:34 pm

That’s not “God”… just the natural laws of matter, as discovered by science, in operation.

Brett Keane
Reply to  Dave Coleman
July 29, 2018 3:19 pm

Dave @July 28, 2018 8:34 pm: That is, God. But you are welcome to your own belief, and I am a Natural Scientist. Just give it a rest please…..

Reply to  Happytohelp
July 28, 2018 10:42 pm

We have lots of invasive species in the forest lands and in deserts. The cheatgrass is creating fire hazards and they are not even native. We have yet to find a way to get rid of them completely.

Reply to  embutler
July 28, 2018 7:26 am

“men caused this fire…” well, as long as there’s no “political” connection

Department of Homeland Security…

Forest Fire Jihad Being Threatened On Terrorist Websites

“U.S. officials monitoring terrorist web sites have discovered a call for using forest fires as weapons against “crusader” nations, in what may explain some recent wildfires in places like southern California and Greece.

A terrorist website was discovered recently that carried a posting that called for “Forest Jihad.” The posting was listed on the Internet on Nov. 26 and reported in U.S. intelligence channels last week.

The statement, in Arabic, said that “summer has begun so do not forget the Forest Jihad.”
The writer called on all Muslims in the United States, Europe, Russia and Australia to “start forest fires.”


Reply to  Latitude
July 28, 2018 7:51 am

Latitude, Thanks for the Post. It’s nice to see that not everyone is brainwashed

Reply to  JMAD
July 28, 2018 8:16 am

unfortunately….ever those most of these fires are arson….they will be reported as increased because of climate change

Reply to  Latitude
July 28, 2018 10:17 am

.. which would not be that incorrect, since climate change causes terrorism. /sarc

Reply to  Robert Kernodle
July 28, 2018 11:11 am

no no NO! climate change from terrorism ! i must say no we now know through many studies from very astute science ..
climate change (which once was global warming but that was proved wrong) is now caused by Cows FARTING ——mooo –yes
we must Jihad against COWS so they stop FARTING !
solution eat a burger today and save the planet.

Reply to  Latitude
July 28, 2018 11:34 am

Because of CO2 there are more trees to burn.

Reply to  MarkW
July 29, 2018 6:46 pm

and the more trees that burn the more CO@ there is
and the more CO2 there is the more trees there are to burn
and the more CO2 there will be to feed the trees
and the more trees there will be to burn
and the more CO2 there will be
and the more space this site gives me
The more crazy your post is you see!!!

Reply to  Latitude
July 28, 2018 8:57 am


There would surely be an announcement from ISIS or some other radical Islamic group that they started the fires.

Has there been any? If not, it would be a bit of a pointless exercise for them.

Reply to  HotScot
July 28, 2018 9:49 am

probably….like the democrats in this country don’t take credit for starting riots and violence

Reply to  Latitude
July 28, 2018 2:25 pm


Fair point. But I’m not convinced jihadi Islamists are as cunning as the Democrats, yet.

Reply to  HotScot
July 28, 2018 4:57 pm

They are both more cunning than any Progressive Democrat in the United States, in addition to caring nothing for keeping their activities hidden.

Your original objection is spot on, HotScot.

Reply to  HotScot
July 28, 2018 4:04 pm

The arson threat dates back to 2008. I suspect the radical Muslims have realized there is no need to light fires as there are enough other idiots around.

Reply to  krm
July 28, 2018 4:32 pm


To serve a jihadist purpose, I’m surprised they haven’t laid claim to forest fires that have killed many.

But then, were governments in consort with the MSM over this issue………Oh dear, I’m not sure I can open that can of worms of governments colluding with the MSM to suppress ISIS claims just to perpetuate the cause of climate change.

Did I really just think that, far less commit it to the ether?

Reply to  HotScot
July 28, 2018 6:27 pm

You should prepare yourself for a visit from men in black and are now on a no fly list.

Reply to  HotScot
July 28, 2018 7:50 pm

it would be dumb for terrorists to admit to starting the fires. All eyes would be open and suspecting them. Better to keep quiet so they can stay sneaky.

Reply to  Latitude
July 28, 2018 11:18 am

The fires in Greece were caused by terrorists. This is the same thing. When they run out of impressive things like planes into buildings, machine-guns, blowing up things, vehicles as weapons, even knives, they turn to their old friend, Mr. Fire.

Reply to  Latitude
July 28, 2018 12:09 pm

Not a Federal website. Looks like a hoax to me.

Domain name registered to:

Admin Name: Martin Jones
Admin Organization: alt. Media Partners
Admin Street: 427 N Tatnall St
Admin City: Wilmington
Admin State/Province: Delaware
Admin Postal Code: 85374

Reply to  Ralph Dave Westfall
July 28, 2018 7:48 pm

I should have made it clearer that the above refers to the http://www.nationalterroralert.com/forest-fire-jihad-being-threatened-on-terrorist-websites/ link.

Reply to  embutler
July 28, 2018 9:32 am

idiot. Yes nature plans for fires. Some plant species require fire for them to reproduce.

Duncan Smith
Reply to  embutler
July 28, 2018 11:05 am

In a touch of irony, “Massive Ontario forest fire sparked by wind farm construction during extreme fire ban, workers allege”. Just saying……


Reply to  embutler
July 28, 2018 1:13 pm

Actually this fire was started by a vehicle which had a mechanical issue. The fire started in the French Gulch area on the very west edge of the fire zone. From there the afternoon/evening winds off of the Pacific drove that fire down the canyons and into Redding.

Also there are no lodgepole pines in this region.

Reply to  embutler
July 28, 2018 10:33 pm

You want to discuss men causing fires? First look how much water is extracted from northern California. https://www.vox.com/cards/california-drought-water/california-water-supply

Rainer Bensch
Reply to  Mr. GROSS
July 29, 2018 1:47 am

Extracted from where? You really mean that a fire would be prevented if some more water laying there?

Reply to  embutler
July 29, 2018 4:27 am

In Australia there are tree that CANNOT germinate without the intense hat of a bushfire to crack the seed cases.
Those tree have been there longer than man has. They evolved to take advantage of the fertile land left after a bushfire.

Bruce Cobb
July 28, 2018 6:09 am

Don’t let Mikey see that video. He’ll call it “literally climate change in action”. It’s the word “literally” that makes it real.

Reply to  Bruce Cobb
July 28, 2018 6:46 am

Stupid fellow. A denier calling others who read long term graphs and science deniers.

Reply to  Joshua
July 28, 2018 11:37 am

Any fool can read a graph. Understanding that graph unfortunately is way beyond your average warmist.

Yes the planet has warmed since the coldest point of the Little Ice Age. Thank God.
Little if any of that warming has been caused by man or CO2.
As to science, computer models are not, and never have been “science”.

Reply to  MarkW
July 28, 2018 3:26 pm

I have to disagree with you there, Mark. Mann proves that not just ANY fool can read a graph.


Rich Davis
Reply to  Schitzree
July 28, 2018 5:03 pm

Yeah, and what about Al Gore with his CO2 – Temperature chart that clearly proves that CO2 concentration lags temperature and is the effect, not the cause? He says it’s proof that CO2 causes temperature to rise.

He’s not just any fool, he’s a world-class fool.

Ipso Facto
Reply to  Joshua
July 28, 2018 2:59 pm

You want graphs? Try this site: https://realclimatescience.com/

Duncan Smith
July 28, 2018 6:17 am

Wow, the Carbon Cycle at work…a very rare and exciting event. Children just aren’t going to know what carbon is. /s

July 28, 2018 6:27 am

Prayers indeed.

FYI: “Video of a ‘fire tornado’ folows.”

July 28, 2018 6:39 am

Looking at the cloud, its extent, elevation and layering, one could actually give it an energy of equivalent Hiroshima bombs.

Greg Cavanagh
July 28, 2018 6:41 am

Is that film sped up? The little tree on the left is shaking as though it is sped up.

mystic rider
Reply to  Greg Cavanagh
July 28, 2018 7:55 am

That’s what we call a time lapsed video. Google it.

Reply to  mystic rider
July 28, 2018 8:47 am

My proof reading skills aren’t the best but I see no mention of this being a time lapsed video. Is it or isn’t it?

July 28, 2018 6:44 am

Alarmists Eric Holthaus, Al Gore, and Mann screams, “GLOBAL WARMING.”
Facts do not matter anymore. Whether it was arson or not, wildfire burning is all AGW.

Crispin in Waterloo
July 28, 2018 6:45 am

The rotation is convection at work. The fire tornado videos in Australia made the phenomenon more visible.

This is a great video showing the combustion of volatiles in the air, particularly on the right. The red and orange colours originate from glowing particles. The temperature of the fire is not high, but if it is big enough…

These high ‘gum’ species are resistant to drought but, wow, they burn well! What is amazing is the number of creatures that survive by burrowing into the ground. Convection helps cool the ground.

Spectacular and awful, in the classic sense.

Reply to  Crispin in Waterloo
July 28, 2018 6:51 am

What is amazing is the number of creatures that survive by burrowing into the ground. Convection helps cool the ground.

Very interesting, thank you.

I knew of the former but didn’t think of the latter…seems to make sense.

Greg Goodman
Reply to  Crispin in Waterloo
July 28, 2018 10:34 pm

No, the rotation is the Coriolis force at work. Hot air rises and needs to be replaced causing horizontal air movement from all directions to the base of the fire.In the NH, that air will be deflected by Coriolis in a clockwise direction at all points. This leads to an counter CW rotation at the hub of the air column.

Rich Davis
July 28, 2018 6:50 am

I certainly don’t welcome or celebrate any negative impacts on people in the area, and hope that everyone stays safe.

But aren’t forest fires a natural part of the ecosystem in that part of the world? Isn’t it the case that the human-caused aspect of this, (if there is any), is decades of forestry practices that cause too much fuel to build up?

william Johnston
Reply to  Rich Davis
July 28, 2018 7:16 am

Some have suggested that Smokey the Bear should have been allowed to expire.

Reply to  william Johnston
July 28, 2018 7:36 am

Send Smokey up to the Arctic, where he’ll die of Arctic warming….

Reply to  beng135
July 28, 2018 7:56 am

Get eaten by a polar bear more likely…

July 28, 2018 6:51 am

I’m curious about the two “rings” in the upper half of the cloud in the photo above. What are they and how are they formed? Are they moving with the cloud, or are they relatively stationary? Do they linger or do they vanish after a few seconds?

The Real Bob_W
Reply to  PaulH
July 28, 2018 7:08 am

Those are ‘pileus clouds.’ I believe they form when a layer of stable air (with adequate moisture) is penetrated by strong convection. Most commonly seen near the top of cu-nims. Maybe an actual meteorologist will chime in…

Reply to  The Real Bob_W
July 28, 2018 2:19 pm

Hey Real Bob, I’m a meteorologist, worked in both the private and public sectors. You are ‘right as rain’ about pileus. They are indeed seen at times at/near the top of cumulonimbus clouds, especially newly developed ones, and most often associated with the more active updraft cloud towers. Once the updraft forming the main cloud pushes through that stable layer the pileus normally pretty quickly dissipates. If the stable layer is too deep, rather than shallow as these seem to be, or the updraft forming the cumulus too weak, then the cloud’s upward development will be halted. Pileus can also develop at/near the tops of cumulus congestus clouds (the cumulus stage right before cumulonimbus).

July 28, 2018 7:06 am

Some years ago, when flying from Vancouver to San Fransisco saw similar fires, with the vortices.
It also occurred with the bombing of cities during WWII. The winds into the heart of the conflagration would blow people into the firestorm.
Bob Hoye

Eric Stevens
Reply to  Bob Hoye
July 28, 2018 4:09 pm

Just the other day I watched a You Tube video of the Tokyo raids in WW2. On this occasion the planes were flying at about 8000ft and encountering house parts, window frames, furniture etc brought to that altitude by the winds of the firestorm.

July 28, 2018 8:32 am

I suspect that the “fire tornado” effect may explain why there is so much large ash being deposited east of the fire. We’ve found partially burned clusters of oak leaves, and our neighbor found a page of a book with the edges burnt in his front yard yesterday.

Lee Collins
July 28, 2018 8:49 am

heard on bbc radio yesterday that in Sweden recently, their airforce dropped a bomb on a forest fire and the blast essentially used up the available oxygen, extinguishing the fire. This test was in a relatively small and safe area but proved successful. Interesting idea.

Eric Stevens
Reply to  Lee Collins
July 28, 2018 4:11 pm

Something is squiffy there. Bombs don’t use atmospheric oxygen. More likely something to do with the blast.

July 28, 2018 8:53 am

These occurred with the Yellowstone fire of 1988.

July 28, 2018 8:53 am

No way you get a fire this big, this much heat, without lots and lots of fuel. If this is in a pine forest, a well managed pine forest doesn’t mind the occasional fire, some say thrive on it. Yet once the fuel underneath has built up over years or decades from excluding fire this is what they get. It will then burn hot enough to catch the live pines. Prescribed burns will also take out diseased pines. Selective harvest will put the trees far enough a part to avoid fires this hot.

For those wise forest and good land managers this is all common knowledge. Blaming it for a second on global warming is a gross disservice to the public, especially the public living adjacent to or in the forest.

Remember the big Yellowstone Park Fire in 1988, the largest wildfire in history. They had excluded fire and aggressively fought minor wildfires for decades, possibly since the park was created. While it was very dry that year it had nothing to do with global warming. Imagine if it happened today.

Reply to  Edwin
July 28, 2018 11:56 am

From 2003:

comment image

Reply to  Edwin
July 28, 2018 1:32 pm

It’s mostly fir trees and very large brushy areas in this situation. Most of the trees all around Redding, and up into the ridges to the west of Redding were cut a long time ago during the copper/gold mining period of the late 1800s and early 1900s. What is left is densely packed brush and smallish trees.

Reply to  Edwin
July 28, 2018 7:24 pm

the fire of 1910 in NORTHERN IDAHO, MONTANA & WASHINGTON 3 million aacres burned
check your facts.

Reply to  bimzer
July 30, 2018 7:46 am

Sorry, I should have said in “Yellowstone Park History.” Yet how exactly did they estimate the acreage in 1910? Regardless my point was you don’t get such fires without a whole lot of fuel. The fuel has accumulated due to the lack of adequate land management.

John F. Hultquist
July 28, 2018 8:57 am

Six years ago, a fire just 5 miles to our north created something similar.
Table Mountain Fire

Here is a bit from the story, but note the “burning bark.”
There are unconfirmed reports that on Wednesday the convection column of smoke went up to over 40,000 feet and carried 8-inch pieces of burning bark 6 to 7 miles away, falling near the Mission Ridge Ski Area.

You can assume the Carr Fire is doing the same. Fires will pop up from the burning embers. Being out in front of the moving fire, putting them out also puts people, equipment, and planes in the path of the big one.

July 28, 2018 9:20 am


Chris Ness
July 28, 2018 9:24 am

It’s just Coriolis Effect. It is the same effect that makes your toilet swirl when you flush it. The only difference is that the heat of the fire makes this a high pressure spinning out rather than a low pressure swirling in.

[?? Check the significance of the Coriolis Effect at very small diameters. .mod]

Reply to  Chris Ness
July 28, 2018 12:06 pm

The Coriolis Effect generally shows up only on tornadoes and larger storms. Even then, the vertical shear in a thunderstorm and jet stream may generate counter-clockwise tornadoes without help from the Coriolis effect.

The Coriolis effect has absolutely no effect on toilets. The water jets are designed to make water rotate and help rinse the bowl.

Oh – and the heat of the fire causes low density gases which rise (convection) and suck air in at the bottom. Fireplaces use that to keep smoke from filling the living room. That’s why you often light a piece of newsprint and hold the flame near the top of the fireplace to help start convection.

Nick Stokes
Reply to  Chris Ness
July 28, 2018 12:17 pm

It’s not exactly Coriolis. But it does express the conservation of angular momentum. When a fluid is gathered in converging flow, the net angular momentum that was present, for whatever reason (often shear), is expressed as a swirling flow. For a hurricane, a reason for imbalance of angular momentum is latitudinal differences in Earth rotation velocity.

Rich Davis
Reply to  Chris Ness
July 28, 2018 12:36 pm

Mod’s comment makes me ponder a bit.

The Coriolis Effect is real. We’re feeling its effects right now. Anyone who denies it is denying well-established science. Have you heard this line before? I mean of course that the CO2 Greenhouse Effect is real, etc., blah blah blah.

Yes, both effects are real, but that does not mean that either effect is the primary driver of any phenomenon.

The Coriolis Effect is very weak at small diameters and short timeframes and can be easily overcome by other forces. It is certainly the cause of cyclonic motion in large storm systems. But at smaller distances, it may be overcome by other forces. I’m not sure if the sources I’m finding on the interwebs are trustworthy, but supposedly about 5% of tornadoes are counter-cyclonic. We can see from the video that the fire is generating a counter-clockwise rotation which is consistent with the Coriolis Effect in the northern hemisphere and I suspect Chris is correct about the fire cloud rotation being driven by the Coriolis Effect. But if some tornadoes are counter-cyclonic on a 100s of meters scale and over minutes of duration, then certainly a toilet with 10s of centimeters scale and seconds of duration is going to be less determined by the Coriolis Effect.

Similarly with CO2. Just because it is a real phenomenon that it traps some heat, it doesn’t mean that it will change the climate. It can be real without being significant.

Greg Cavanagh
Reply to  Rich Davis
July 28, 2018 2:15 pm

When I was young I watched a documentary about how Noah’s Ark. They claimed that it’s shape made the ship turn into the waves. They demonstrated this by rotating a model of it on a table. It will spin in one direction, but not in the other.

I didn’t believe the show, so built one myself out of hard wood. It definitely did exactly what they said it would. Apparently it rotates clockwise in the Southern hemisphere and counter-clockwise in the Northern hemisphere.

I’ve got no idea if this is the Coriolis Effect or not, but it does fit the description.

Brett Keane
Reply to  Rich Davis
July 29, 2018 3:59 pm

Rich @July 28, 2018 12:36 pm: Being gaseous, they lack the mass to break the Gas Laws, and have degrees of freedom. Circular, I know, but that is the reason for those Laws. Energy transfer in pico-to- microseconds, expansion at c. 5km/sec., then buoyant escape/convection.

July 28, 2018 9:52 am

It’s is the conjunction for it is, not the possessive of it.
Just Saying.

Juan Slayton
Reply to  doctorsichrome
July 28, 2018 11:05 am

Just sayin’ … : > )

Reply to  doctorsichrome
July 28, 2018 12:15 pm

“Saying” isn’t derived from someone’s name, so it generally isn’t capitalized except as the first word in a sentence. Just pedanting. (I assume “pedanting” isn’t a word!)

John F. Hultquist
Reply to  doctorsichrome
July 28, 2018 12:48 pm

Uff da (sometimes also spelled huffda, uff-da, uffda, uff-dah, oofda, ufda, ufdah) [Wiki]
It is a small mind that cannot come up with more than one way to spell a word.

Reply to  John F. Hultquist
July 28, 2018 6:16 pm

John F. Hultquist July 28, 2018 12:48 pm
Uff da (sometimes also spelled huffda, uff-da, uffda, uff-dah, oofda, ufda, ufdah) [Wiki]
It is a small mind that cannot come up with more than one way to spell a word.

Yaeh “ghoti” iz a grate whey two spell fish, knot. It’s fine for fun, but for sensible communication one name must point to no more than one variable (yes one can write a program with one name conditionally pointing to two different variables but it is stupid). Richard Feynman knows the difference between its and it’s, dummies don’t. Don’t appear to be a dummy(general injunction, not pointed at John F. Hultquist) .

M__ S__
July 28, 2018 10:20 am

We can’t prevent all fires, but we can reduce their frequency through management of the forests. If one simply leaves the trees alone then natures’s tree management system (fire) will do it for us.

July 28, 2018 10:38 am

Fire bugs at work !

July 28, 2018 11:01 am

Interesting cloud. Questions in my pondering mind:

1) How much condensed water vapor is part and partial to the upper level ‘white’ regions as seen?

2) Are the 2 upper ‘rings’ composed of primarily water vapor?

3) If the ‘rings’ are condensing water vapor, why are they dark in color with the sun shining on them? I’ve been looking at smaller shallow clouds being black/deep grey that were not fire related and had always assumed it was caused by shadowing from above. I have some doubts with this always being the case. That darkening/shadowing effect at the bottom and leading edge only seems to happen with hot surface radiation and developing systems. Just a thought on some observations.

Before anyone jumps the shark, I know this cloud is the result of a fire. The fire is pulling combustion air inward and has some moisture content. Hope that helps in advance.

Reply to  eyesonu
July 28, 2018 12:28 pm

Most of the combustion is from cellulose, a polymer with a glucose base C6H10O5 x a big number. Burned, each base becomes 6(CO2) and 5(H2O), so plenty of water available as the gas cools with altitude.

The dark lower cloud is likely due to shadow, possibly from other clouds, smoke, or topography. A lot of these photos are taken late in the afternoon because the images are more dramatic.

Note the lack of shadows on mountain on the lower right here:

comment image

That means the sun is behind the camera and is very low in the sky.

The height where water vapor begins to condense is likely involved too.

Reply to  Ric Werme
July 28, 2018 12:37 pm

In the pic you offered the sun is at about 90 degree from the left. Note ground shadow from smoke, shadow on plane wing, shadows in hollows on mtn in foreground.

Reply to  Ric Werme
July 28, 2018 1:25 pm


Even more interesting is the dark low level “cloud (?)” to the left of the fire. The wind is blowing from the left so that “cloud” is upwind of the fires seen unless there are other fires upwind (left of and out of the pic). If not smoke, then LWIR from the fire may be having a profound effect on the air’s water vapor content causing it to appear dark. That is what I have been looking into for quite some time.

Air is being pulled in towards fire and the rising “fire” column. If the air is being affected by LWIR from the ground, the fire, and the hot rising column that would be a lot of recycled energy to be transported upward. I’m just pondering outside the box. Inquiring minds are restless.

Rich Davis
Reply to  eyesonu
July 28, 2018 3:10 pm

Don’t confuse the complete combustion products CO2 and H2O with the real-world output of a fire. The combustion is not ideal, tons of aerosols and particulate soot is produced in addition to all the CO2 and H2O. The dark black stuff is just smoke.

Reply to  Rich Davis
July 28, 2018 6:34 pm


I did assume that the dark, black stuff in that cloud to be smoke. Is there smoke in every cloud? I don’t think so.

I drove thru a small tornado once. It had a different name used in Virginia for the short and short lived ones. It had absolute black streamers and house sized absolute black mini clouds that were no more than 50 feet above the ground. Probably because of lack of light penetration. It was a hot humid afternoon and wasn’t fire related. A few miles up the interstate there was a row of semi’s laid out on their side in a nice pretty row. Made me think of the “Laugh-in” and the tri-cycle skit.

Anyway, just discussing an observation. I’ve never seen super saturated super-heated clouds ….. maybe. If you have please give me a description. If it’s not physically possible let me know.

Reply to  eyesonu
July 28, 2018 12:37 pm

Oh – the upper rings are in air that is clean. However, it’s being lifted and has reached a point where water vapor condenses. It’s a form of “lenticular cloud” most commonly formed as air flows over a ridge or mountain.


Some are pretty extreme. This is probably real:

comment image

This is fake:

comment image

Rich Davis
Reply to  eyesonu
July 28, 2018 1:12 pm

To your question 1, I would guess that essentially all of the white region is water vapor. When wood burns in an open flame with excess oxygen available, the combustion products are carbon dioxide and water. The forest could be bone dry prior to the fire and the air being drawn into the fire could also be extremely dry, but the fire will still generate massive amounts of water vapor from that chemical reaction. Most of the water comes from the hydrogen in the wood cellulose being combusted, not from water in the air or soil or trees. (Of course there is also water from those sources). As the hot air convects up into cold air, the water vapor condenses, producing the puffy white cloud.

For question 2, as others have mentioned already, they are water vapor as well. I’m not sure how to give evidence of that, except that you see similar cloud structure in thunderstorms.

For question 3, it seems to me that clouds seem white if we are seeing reflected sunlight and gray or black if we are seeing them from a perspective where the sunlight needs to transmit through them. Looking up at those “rings'”, sunlight is shining on the top and we see the bottom.

Reply to  Rich Davis
July 28, 2018 1:36 pm

Per a quick ref off the interwebs: The chemical composition of wood varies from species to species, but is approximately 50% carbon, 42% oxygen, 6% hydrogen, 1% nitrogen, and 1% other elements (mainly calcium, potassium, sodium, magnesium, iron, and manganese) by weight.

So, wood would not seem to contain that much H (i.e. it is not a hydrocarbon fuel source) …

Rich Davis
Reply to  _Jim
July 28, 2018 2:56 pm

Wood is of course not a hydrocarbon, it’s mostly cellulose, a polysaccharide (carbohydrate). That’s why it’s nowhere near as nice of a fuel as oil or gas. But it still has only two combustion products, carbon dioxide and water, if the reaction is complete.

Cellulose is 6 parts Carbon, 10 parts Hydrogen and 5 parts Oxygen. The molecular weight is calculated from 6×12 + 10×1 + 5×16 = 162 g/mole, so the hydrogen content by weight is 10/162 = 6.2% (don’t forget that hydrogen is the lightest of all elements).

But for every molecule of cellulose burned, the six carbon atoms go to six carbon dioxide molecules and the ten hydrogen atoms go to five water (H2O) molecules. Some of the oxygen is supplied by the 5 oxygen atoms in the fuel and the rest come from the air.

If you burn a ton (1000kg) of cellulose, you will produce 1630kg of CO2 and 556kg of water. (More than half of the weight of the combustion products comes from the oxygen derived from the combustion air).

In other words, for every pound of bone dry wood that you burn, you would get more than half a pound of water vapor. Even if the air is bone dry and the ground is bone dry and the wood is dead and bone dry, you will get a huge amount of water vapor in the smoke.

Reply to  Rich Davis
July 28, 2018 3:24 pm

… to wit, the simple answer, H is still about 6% …

Rich Davis
Reply to  _Jim
July 28, 2018 4:25 pm

Yes, Jim, but did you ever have any point here?

The 6 lbs of hydrogen in 100 lbs of wood will produce 56 lbs of water vapor.

Reply to  Rich Davis
July 29, 2018 9:23 am

Rich Davis in his opening post to eyesonu says
To your question 1, I would guess that essentially all of the white region is water vapor.

Sure. BUT, did ALL the ‘cloud mass’ steam or condensed water come form H2O derived from the combustion of wood OR from the the usual WV in the AIR that was lifted UP above the condensation level AS IF it had been heated by the sun in the ‘usual’ pop-up thunderstorm manner.

That is my point.

Rich Davis
Reply to  _Jim
July 29, 2018 1:54 pm

You’re beating down a strawman argument that I did not make, Jim. I said that “most” of that water vapor comes from hydrogen in the wood, not “all”, and I said that of course there was water in the air, soil, and trees.

I’m sure it’s the case that virtually all of the water in the soil and trees is vaporized in a big fire like that. But how much water would that be under hot dry conditions conducive to a wildfire? What do you suppose the mass of wood consumed by that fire has been? 56% of that number went up as water vapor from the chemical reaction.


gives an estimate of 38 tons/acre for the biomass in a forest. We are told that over 80,000 acres are involved. That would be 38 tons/acre x 80000 acres = 3,040,000 (US) tons or about 6 billion pounds. (2.76 million metric tons). If 56% of that is water vapor generated by combustion, then we get about 1.55 million metric tons of water, which if a liter is a kilogram of water, then we get about 1.55 billion liters of water or about 409 million gallons of water.

So yes, I think most of the water vapor comes from the products of combustion.

Reply to  Rich Davis
July 29, 2018 2:34 pm


Thanks for the knowledge regarding the conversion of biomass to water vapor. I was not aware of the extent involved. I was quite surprised!

My main focus is in the effects of LWIR being emitted and absorbed to and from forming clouds and air in all its composition elements around and in the cloud. I’m focused primarily on the bottom and lower regions of the cloud and region of entering air. The upper level rings are icing on the cake!

Fire creates an enormous of radiant gases as well as generating a shed load ! Toss in the enormous amount of heat from the fire and …….. makes the mind curious.

A serious discussion on this in its own thread may be in order.

Rich Davis
Reply to  eyesonu
July 29, 2018 4:03 pm

Do you mean as a contributor to atmospheric warming? I suppose that LWIR is partially radiated back just as would be the case with normal surface temperatures. But I expect it would be too small of an effect to be significant beyond the immediate area. Also the soot and aerosols probably offset that with cooling effects. Not sure I understand.

Reply to  Rich Davis
July 29, 2018 5:19 pm


I’m focused on the clouds as clearly stated in my comments. I’m sure you don’t understand. I never said anything about the atmosphere or global warming or the moon. Nice pitch though.

To play along with the ‘not understanding’, do you consider the “immediate area” to be 1′ or 100′. Not sure I understand.

Rich Davis
Reply to  eyesonu
July 30, 2018 10:55 am

I’m sure I don’t follow what you’re driving at. I can assure you I’m not playing dumb, as I’m quite good at the real thing. When I say immediate area, I was thinking of 100 km/60 miles or so, but just a wild guess.

Long wavelength infrared coming from the fire is going to be absorbed by the water vapor and CO2 in the cloud and some of it gets radiated back toward the ground, most of the heat is probably rising high up into the troposphere and radiating to space. What am I missing here?

Reply to  Rich Davis
July 30, 2018 1:25 pm

IR from a surface radiates out in all directions, not just up or down. Easy to read temp 45 degrees normal to a surface. IR does not have a level or plumb-bob attached to it. The 2D illustrations you’ve seen are simple cartoon graphics. Buy an IR thermometer and play with it. Fifty bucks and an open mind will open your mind.

Don’t even try giving me a lesson in geometry with regards to the emitting area vs flux at an angle .

I’m thinking a range of 1 to 5 miles out from the condensing water vapor forming the cloud. Especially focused within the 1 mile range.

Rich Davis
Reply to  eyesonu
July 31, 2018 3:04 pm

I don’t see any reason to disagree with what you’re saying, but I still don’t understand why it is relevant, or why you seem to think I’m trying to dissuade you from any opinion. I try to keep an open mind at all times without letting my brain fall out!

What does somebody claim that you are disputing? Which 2D illustrations that I’ve seen? Every photon absorbed or re-emitted has x-, y-, and z-components. Ordinarily I would guess that the x- and y-components tend to cancel out because the immediate area has similar temperature, so that outgoing and incoming side radiation are about equal in any volume of space. When there’s a massive hot fire, the side components will tend to create a temperature gradient around the fire. If that means that some of the heat transfers laterally and then has a straight shot up to space because it is no longer bouncing around under the fire cloud, then I guess it means that the cooling would be a bit faster than if all the heat went straight up.

The thing is that I guess that most of the heat is going up due to mass transfer (convection) not radiation. All that water vapor is carrying massive quantities of heat from the latent heat of vaporization. Another mass transfer effect is that cooler air is rushing in to fill the void from the hot air shooting up into the cloud. So even as radiation must be warming air adjacent to the fire, that air is being sucked into the fire with cool air following behind it.

So does radiation make much of a difference here, other than at the top of the cloud?

Sorry, but I still don’t see what you’re driving at. It’s interesting to think about it though.

Mark Beeunas
July 28, 2018 11:29 am

And, pileus clouds

Brett Keane
Reply to  Mark Beeunas
July 29, 2018 4:19 pm

Mark, July 28, 2018 11:29 am: I expect pileus would refer to ‘spear’ (from Latin), because it shafts through other clouds.

Juan Slayton
July 28, 2018 11:39 am

Came up to the Northwest last week on vacation. Will be returning to Los Angeles in a couple of days for a breath of fresh air. Some commenters point out that prescribed burns and regular natural burns can reduce the fuel load and prevent fires from crowning. The back side of that is that all burns produce smoke, which can have serious health consequences. Seems like it’s always a trade off in the real world. For those who can’t escape, this site may be useful:

John F. Hultquist
Reply to  Juan Slayton
July 28, 2018 1:08 pm

Will be returning to Los Angeles in a couple of days for a breath of fresh air.

Sorry about the smoke. We’ve been told it is from Siberia. Roy Spencer had a post (July 25) on those fires.
Near us, we have had numerous sage brush/steppe sorts of fires, starting along I-90, with smoke heading away (southeast) from us. Thursday the 19th, I had to detour coming back from Spokane. That cost me 1 1/2 hours. Had a DC-10 tanker fly over me, and saw skimmers taking water off the Columbia River.
It is early in the season, so we anticipate more.
I’ll be at Mt. Rainier, Sunday, working on a trail. Otherwise, I’d offer to meet and buy you dinner.

Juan Slayton
Reply to  John F. Hultquist
July 28, 2018 2:32 pm

Hi John (Nancy, too)
Maybe next summer… (We’ve in mind to go back to Stehekin.) This year we’re based just out of Medford, although we did run up to Tacoma last weekend. It’s about as smoky here as I’ve ever seen it. At least the wigwam burners are long gone…

July 28, 2018 11:40 am

Fire is an electrical plasma. What you’re witnessing is called a birkeland current in an electrical plasma also called a field aligned current. When electricity travels in space it follows a helical path because of the effects of the electromagnetic fields that are generated.

Reply to  THX112
July 28, 2018 1:32 pm

When electricity travels in space it …

Bzzzzt. Dissociated factoids issued w/o regard for required prerequisite conditions ..

Alan J. Perrick
July 28, 2018 11:42 am

“Anti-racists” say there’s a RACE problem. They say it’ll be solved when non-Whites pour into ALL & ONLY White nations and “assimilate” to get a brown mixture.

They say only White nations have this RACE problem; they say non-White nations are fine.

If I object to my own genocide these “anti-racists” say I am a naziwhowantstokillsixmillionjews.

They say they’re anti-racist. What they are is anti-White.

Anti-racist is a codeword for anti-White.

Rich Davis
Reply to  Alan J. Perrick
July 28, 2018 1:20 pm

how is this on topic exactly?

Reply to  Alan J. Perrick
July 29, 2018 8:12 am

And being anti-any-race, is racism. What a rotating fire tornado!!

July 28, 2018 11:43 am

Fire is an electrical plasma. What you’re witnessing is called a birkeland current named after Christian birkeland the Norwegian scientist who discovered them. Also called field aligned currents it is the way that electricity travels in space. It follows a helical pattern because of the internal forces of electrical and magnetic fields.

July 28, 2018 12:03 pm

What/who started this fire? It appears to me that the State no longer pursues arson investigation and prosecution … since we all know, now, that global warming CAUSES wildfires … What the hell has become to my country!?

Reply to  Kenji
July 28, 2018 1:25 pm

The Carr fire was caused by a malfunction on someone’s vehicle. So I would assume that if they know that that they also know who the owner is of that vehicle.

July 28, 2018 12:03 pm

Classic Homer Simpson Doh! moments.

Amass a large enough amount of flammable material that when ignited, it appears to create it’s own weather effects.
A) The fire draws in greater and greater amounts of air for sustaining the fire with oxygen.
B) Fires cause convection of an accelerated schedule.
C) Incoming winds, convection draw and coriolis influence cause rising columns of hot air to rotate.

Without supercell air circulation and jet stream influences, firenados are simple dire devils.

There are many times in recorded history when man caused or experienced blazes that initiated local weather effects.

* 1) Dresden firebombing in 1945
* 2) Chinese capital of Chongqing firebombed in 1939
* 3) Firebombing British cities during the blitz, e.g. Coventry firebombing in 1940
* 4) Tokyo firebombing in 1945

Most of these firebombings were planned to utilize local weather to maximize the fires.

Other major fires in urban centers had the misfortune of fire ignition occurring during weather that aids the blaze:
* 1) The Great London fire in 1666
* 2) The Chicago fire in 1871
* 3) The San Francisco fire caused by the 1906 Earthquake

Other fires throughout civilizations history occurred and in many places convinced local populations to build with stone or brick. Only, many of those locations no longer require building with nonflammable masonry.

Forests are natural firetraps. As fallen debris pile up, it is advantageous and supports many of a forests smaller creatures. When the fallen decris builds too large a cache, that debris can sustain a large hot fire that sterilizes Earth’s surface layers and cooks the cambium layers in trees whose naturally fire resistant bark normally protects them.

While it is easiest to point out places where man’s interaction with forests resulted in disastrous fires; one must understand that nature if perfectly capable of igniting forests without man’s aid.

* Example 1) “Naturalist Henry David Thoreau, though known as the Sage of Walden, accidentally, but carelessly, sparked a life-threatening fire that blighted 300 acres in 1844, while he was cooking fish in the Concord, MA woods.”

* Example 2) “The Miramichi Fire – 1825; cause unknown.

* Example 3) “During the late summer of 1910, a searing drought combined with high-velocity August windstorms to create a fiery holocaust in the forests of the Pacific Northwest. The fires also laid a major challenge at the feet of the newly established U.S. Forest Service, which was charged with fighting the fires.”

“In mid-August, a lightning storm ignited the largest and longest-burning of Oregon’s 1910 fires on the Crater National Forest (now Rogue River-Siskiyou). More than fifteen large fires (over 1,000 acres) burned both east and south of Medford. The rapidly spreading Brushy Hill Fire in the Siskiyou Mountains a few miles from Ashland caused merchants to close their businesses, and all able-bodied men “assembled on the fireline to save the city.” While leading an inexperienced crew of townsmen, Ranger Claude Dubois, whose hands were badly burned, reportedly went without sleep for fifty-five hours.

In the Cascade Range, a fire burned much of the South Fork of the Rogue River Canyon near Prospect, and another torched several thousand acres of dense forest west of Union Creek. Careless berry-pickers caused a large fire on Huckleberry Mountain, just west of Crater Lake National Park, and arsonists set blazes close to the town of Butte Falls.

The Cat Hill fire east of Butte Falls was the biggest conflagration in the Crater National Forest. Burning at least 30,000 acres, the fire swept from the slopes of Mount McLoughlin northward along the spine of the Cascades. The Oregonian described the situation at Cat Hill as “almost like a tremendous explosion, scattering sheets of flame in all directions.” Forest Supervisor Martin Erickson and his crew of Greek railroad laborers took refuge in the shallow Twin Ponds “to keep from being roasted.” Arriving at the Medford depot in the smoke-filled Rogue Valley on August 20, companies E and M of the 1st Infantry headed to join firefighters at Cat Hill and elsewhere.

In many cases, firefighting efforts simply helped deflect the flame fronts from ranches, towns, and valuable stands of timber. The fires were not successfully suppressed until the fall rains provided relief.”

Example 3’s fires initiated America’s aggressive fire detection and suppression program that allowed fallen debris in forests to build into very dangerous amounts; leaving a legacy of recent fires that remind man that fallen forest debris needs to me maintained at safe levels.

* Example 4) “Silverton Fire in 1868, Oregon; Worst recorded fire in state’s history”

* Example 5) Canada Forest fires: “Based on data in the National Forestry Database, over 8000 fires occur each year, and burn an average of over 2.1 million hectares. Also, lightning causes about 50% of all fires but accounts for about 85% of the annual area burned.”

Lynn Wood
Reply to  ATheoK
July 28, 2018 1:08 pm

The Allies learned how to cause a firestorm in the bombing of German cities in the European theater of WWll. This knowledge was used in the incendiary bombing of most of the urban areas of Japan during the Second World War. Firestorms were intentionally created, at the height of the American B29 bombing campaign, Japanese cities were being burned by the tens of square miles a night with casualty rates exceeding that of the Atomic Bomb drops. (which, in an aside, were determined to be duds!!!) But relax, now we have neutron bombs able to leave cities intact but sterile of all life forms.

[Duds?????? .mod]

Reply to  Lynn Wood
July 28, 2018 1:25 pm

Cite? Or is this a contemporary conclusion drawn from a simple cursory review of known historical events?

Reply to  Lynn Wood
July 30, 2018 10:45 am

Utter nonsense.

“Overall, by Sahr Conway-Lanz’s calculation, the US firebombing campaign destroyed 180 square miles of 67 cities, killed more than 300,000 people and injured an additional 400,000, figures that exclude the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki which took 140,000 lives by the end of 1945.”

67 cities firebombed for a grand total of 180 sq. miles with an unknown total amount of raids to achieve that total.
That works out to 2.6 sq. miles per city. An average remarkably close to what successful firebombing raids accomplished.

The largest firestorm caused by bombing was also the first firebombing of Tokyo, which burned 15 sq. miles over a period of 6 hours. A small percentage of Tokyo.
Firebombing missions in Japan took advantage of the winds to drive fires, instead of initiating a fire maelstrom; e.g. Tokyo’s akakaze, the red wind that sweeps with gale force across the Tokyo plain.

“Hiroshima was attacked on 6 August. At 8:15 am local time the B-29 Enola Gay, piloted by Tibbets, dropped the “Little Boy” atomic bomb over the center of the city. The resulting explosion killed tens of thousands of people and destroyed about 4.7 square miles (12 km2) of buildings. The six American aircraft involved in this attack returned safely to the Marianas.

“The second atomic bomb attack was made on 9 August. On this day, the B-29 Bockscar was dispatched to attack Kokura with the “Fat Man” bomb. The city was found to be covered in smoke and haze, however; as a result, the plane’s pilot, Major Charles Sweeney, decided to attack the secondary target of Nagasaki instead. The bomb was dropped at 10:58 am local time, and the resulting 20 kiloton explosion destroyed 1.45 square miles (3.8 km2) of buildings in the Urakami district. Official Japanese figures issued in the late 1990s state the total number of people killed as a result of this attack exceeded 100,000″

That is without counting deaths caused by nuclear weapons, following the war.

Facts which put into perspective your incendiary claims. The duds are your claims.

The allies learned firebombing from the Germans who actively firebombed England’s cities early in the war. As I mention above; look up the Coventry firebombings.

Firebombing Japan’s cities was a tactic that grew out of knowledge from two major sources:
A) Europe’s proof that firebombing cities works.
B) The painful discovery made during the island hopping campaign, that fire was one of the most effective weapons for dealing with a deeply entrenched foe, who believed:
* Surrender was an absolute loss of honor,
* Death was more honorable than surrender,
* Futile suicidal final efforts to kill/maim/destroy/damage Allies was preferable to surrender; as well demonstrated by the Kamikaze campaigns.

Aiding that decision was the development of the gasoline filled weapons that would be known as napalm, for use by Allied ground attack and support aircraft.

After the atomic bombs were dropped, leaflets were dropped, to warn Japanese citizens that until Japan’s surrender, bombing and firebombing raids would continue.
comment image

“Translation of WWII Japanese warning leaflets. Courtesy of The National WWII Museum:


America asks that you take immediate heed of what we say on this leaflet.

We are in possession of the most destructive explosive ever devised by men. A single one of our newly developed atomic bombs is actually the equivalent in explosive power to what 2000 of our giant B-29’s can carry on a single mission. This awful fact is one for you to ponder and we solemnly assure you it is grimly accurate.

We have just begun to use this weapon against your homeland. If you still have any doubt, make inquiry as to what happened to Hiroshima when just one atomic bomb fell on that city.

Before using this bomb to destroy every resource of the military by which they are prolonging this useless war, we ask that you now petition the Emperor to end the war. Our President has outlined for you the thirteen consequences of an honorable surrender: We urge that you accept these consequences and begin the work of building a new, better, and peace-loving Japan.

You should take steps now to cease military resistance. Otherwise, we shall resolutely employ this bomb and all other superior weapons to promptly and forcefully end the war.


F. Ross
July 28, 2018 12:03 pm

The still image is both hypnotically beautiful and terrifying at the same time.

Juan Slayton
July 28, 2018 12:04 pm

A. J. Perrick at 11:42 seems to have the wrong thread or (more likely) the wrong blog.

Lynn Wood
July 28, 2018 12:08 pm

check out
for a larger perspective
a map of the earth showing local temperatures and winds
across all land and ocean

Jerrell Strawn
July 28, 2018 12:14 pm

Global warming.

July 28, 2018 12:21 pm

Fires are not started with spontaneous combustion in dry hot grass. Look at the numbers of fires we have in the west in the last couple of years compared to 50 years ago. I believe arsonist are at work.

July 28, 2018 12:28 pm

what percentage of fires there are caused by illegals or domestic terrorists

Reply to  mike6080
July 29, 2018 8:27 am

Or fire ants for that matter!

July 28, 2018 12:36 pm

I built my house on the side of an active volcano…. WHY IS THERE LAVA IN MY LIVINGROOM?!?!?

I built my house in a place that has had natural wildfires for hundreds of thousands of years… WHY IS MY HOME A HEAP OF CHARCOAL?!?!?

I built my house in an artificially watered and air-conditioned desert… WHY IS IT SO HOT OUTSIDE!?!?!?!


Reply to  BERNIEwasRAPED
July 28, 2018 1:22 pm

Actually, I think he “took one” for the team …

July 28, 2018 1:09 pm

Just a heads up folks; down here in So. Ca~ via: San Diego county/ Riverside county/ San Bernardino county–‘a man was arrested Wednesday’ and it was reported that he started 9 fires with in a 3 day spree. His name is reportedly being a “Brandon McGlover” which is very Irish name in nationality. The guy’s photo would suggest otherwise– he’s “not a African American/ and or Mexican” but some other race– dark skin tone, dark brown eyes, black hair and very prominent and striking features etc. etc. “JUST SAYIN” please do not shoot the messenger.

I saw this guys photo, and in reading his “very un-likely real name” ?!?! I believe there is a ring of arsonists hitting the Western US because its all happening with in the last two 1/2 weeks and/ or the beginning of July. Colorado, Yellowstone, now here in Ca….. where to next?

Just like with Greece…., they seem targeted.

Prayers to fallen…, glad this man/ arsonist ‘BRANDON’ got caught and arrested.

July 28, 2018 1:12 pm

Hmmm …. new site format Anthony? Been awhile since I could literally “see”, but the vision issues are quickly being relegated to the rear view mirror …

Back on topic, one word response:


July 28, 2018 1:13 pm

Oh – and did Reed Timmer show up for this one?

July 28, 2018 1:18 pm

How does the “Solving Tornadoes” guy explain this phenom?

July 28, 2018 1:28 pm

French “Meteotron” event, experiment:



A French scientist, J. Dessens of the Observatoire du Puy de Dome, Clermont University, reports in Nature the discovery by accident of a way to make tornadoes artificially – and therefore of a means of studying the conditions under which they arise.

On a plateau in the south of France the Observatory built an apparatus which was originally intended for making artificial cumulus clouds. It is called the Meteotron and consists of an array of 100 burners spaced over an area rather larger than a football field. Fuel is pumped into them and, together, they consume about a ton of oil a minute, producing the very considerable power of some 700,000 kilowatts. In operation the device produces a think column of black smoke that permits observations of the resulting upward air currents.

July 28, 2018 1:41 pm

History repeating and echoing around the world. Dont manage the fuel load and it is only a matter of time.

Reply to  yarpos
July 28, 2018 2:15 pm

Meanwhile, lumber prices are at an all-time high …

Reply to  yarpos
July 29, 2018 8:08 am

If you don’t manage the fuel load, nature will do it for you.

Ira Titilinger
July 28, 2018 2:07 pm

Californication is being punished.

Lane Eby
July 28, 2018 2:16 pm

Yeah…. This is nothing new. If you lived in Calif in the 70’s 80’s or even the 90’s when we had wet seasons we always had these type of fires. It’s because you have fuel that grows in the rainy season and dries in the spring and early summer. Then burns in the late summer early fall until the rain starts again. Cycle of life. Too many Calif people have short term memories.

Please don’t say this is global warming. this is California pre man. In fact, California Redwoods have evolved over 100 thousands to utilize this cycle. Their seeds will not germinate without fire

July 28, 2018 2:34 pm

Will this fire episode add to the Global Warming Crisis??

Reply to  Factscount
July 28, 2018 3:25 pm

In the minds of some, no doubt.

July 28, 2018 3:32 pm

Hold on… If the Earth is so big man can’t change the weather the how can a wildfire caused by man change the weather?

Yooozer loozers be so confuseders.

Ron Johnson
Reply to  VendicarKahn
July 28, 2018 7:55 pm

Look up “macro” and “micro”…

Jim Mackensen
July 28, 2018 3:39 pm

For accuracy, I, Jim Mackensen, did not take the picture of the smoke column. I saw it an a blog site with no attribution and copied and pasted to to another blog site. I do not know who took the photo.

Gary Clifford Schroeder
July 28, 2018 3:53 pm

if GOD keeps burning up our TREE
will they all be gone forever
grandkids without grass, trees and sky

Linda Goodman
July 28, 2018 3:58 pm

Fires burning so hot they’re melting steel and other impossible effects and disturbing anomalies that only conform to directed energy weapons. I know that’s like stating in 2001 that the twin tower collapses and building 7 sure looked like controlled demolition. But no, don’t believe the 2nd law of thermodynamics or your lyin’ eyes or you might be labeled a ‘conspiracy theorist’. I’ll take my chances and honor the facts, one of which is, diabolical s*it happens.

Cui Bono? Many [most?] areas of California burnt and burning are included in the Agenda 2030 UNSD plan. And most property owners can’t rebuild, thanks to prohibitive ‘climate change’ restrictions, so they’re selling their land for pennies on the dollar.

California Gets Cooked

Advanced Google search: “directed energy weapons” “california” “fire”
About 49,700 results

William C Beckham
July 29, 2018 4:50 am

We wouldn’t have such devasting wildfires if the environmentalists hadn’t prevented undergrowth removal.

John Tall
July 29, 2018 8:13 am

I figure that this is just karma. California getting Californicated.

July 29, 2018 9:43 am


July 29, 2018 11:15 am

The NDP’s argument against Alberta coal is “air pollution” – but ALL our coal-fired plants have pollution controls and all air pollutants from all these coal plants equal ~1/1000 of the air pollution we experience each year from forest fires. In effect, all we have to do is defer ONE forest fire per year (0.1%) , and we can keep our coal plants and keep our electrical power costs very low.


Fossil fuels still provide 85% of Global Primary Energy, whereas Hydro is 7% and Nuclear has dropped to 4%. This “Conventional Power Generation“ totals 96%, and Renewables have increased to 4%.

Despite tens of trillions of dollars in squandered subsidies, Renewables still provide only 4% of global primary energy, and CO2 emissions have INCREASED in the countries that have introduced the most Renewables. This is because Renewables are not green and do not produce much useful (dispatchable) energy. Renewables are too intermittent and require almost 100% spinning reserve (backup) of Conventional Power Generation to fill-in when the wind does not blow or the Sun does not shine.

This “4% Renewables” would drop to near-zero if our idiot politicians did not force renewables into the grid ahead of useful, dispatchable power – this is another huge hidden subsidy for Renewables. Grid-connected wind and solar power are harmful, because they drive up energy costs AND also seriously destabilize the grid. South Australia has experienced two long outages caused by wind power.

In Alberta, our imbecilic politicians are phasing out our coal plants, and replacing them with natural gas-fired units. While gas-fired power plants are much better than wind power, our energy prices are going to increase sharply and become more volatile in the future, because gas prices are at historic lows and will almost certainly increase.

The NDP’s argument against Alberta coal is “air pollution” – but ALL our coal-fired plants have pollution controls and all air pollutants from all these coal plants equal ~1/1000 of the air pollution we experience each year from forest fires. In effect, all we have to do is defer ONE forest fire per year (0.1%), and we can keep our coal plants operating and keep our electrical power costs very low.

The NDP also believe that CO2, essential for all plant and crop growth, is a pollutant. It is not, and it is not causing dangerous global warming. That falsehood is popular among the uneducated and green extremists.

The only measurable impact of increased atmospheric CO2 is significantly increased plant and crop yields.



John Harsanyi
July 29, 2018 11:37 am

Climate change is called weather change because it’s been going on for 100’s of years.
People who study historical weather patterns are laughing at all the hype.

The bitch
July 29, 2018 1:45 pm

Man did make this fire the agency is called NASA…. sun simulator.Boom boom boom out goes the lights. A woman reported that she heard boom boom boom and she knew “they” were igniting the fires. DEW!! HA. gotcha. synthetic telepathy also being used only one “some of the the people” Those that are followers of satan and his little planet.

Alan J. Perrick
July 29, 2018 7:08 pm

People say there is a RACE problem. People say this RACE problem will be solved when the third world pours into EVERY and ONLY into White countries.

People say the only solution to the RACE problem is if ALL and ONLY White countries “assimilate,” i.e., intermarry, with all those non-Whites.

But if I tell that obvious truth about the ongoing program of genocide against White people, Anti-Whites agree that I am a naziwhowantstokillsixmillionjews.

Anti-racist is a codeword for anti-White.

July 29, 2018 8:26 pm

What is “it is” own weather?

July 30, 2018 5:53 am

Firenado… But does it have any Sharks in it?

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