CyArk

Surviving the Fire

How the Redwoods looked before and after the 2020 CZU Lightning Fire

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Big Basin Fire Map by Big BasinCyArk

The 2020 CZU Lightning Fire

Widespread thunderstorms erupted across Northern California following a heatwave on August 16th, 2020.

The 2020 CZU Lightning Fire

On the evening of August 18th, 2020, changing weather in the Santa Cruz Mountains caused several lightning fires to burn together. Big Basin Redwoods State Park was extensively impacted by this event known as the CZU Lightning Fire.

Headquarters Before the CZU Lightning Fire

Prior to the 2020 CZU Lightning Fire, the Headquarters area was the most developed area in the park, with campgrounds, picnic areas, store and gift shop, and trails.

The Trees around the Headquarters, March 2021

Many of the named trees are significant because they show the marks of previous fires. While the CZU fire had significant impact, it is possible that the fire may be barely detectable hundreds of years in the future, a small amount of time within the lifespan of a redwood tree.

Big Basin Debris (2020-09-16) by Daniel MekisCyArk

Headquarters After the CZU Lightning Fire, September 2020

The CZU fire's impact depended greatly on the landscape and environmental conditions in certain areas. The Headquarters area was one of the most significantly impacted parts of the park.

Redwood Loop trail - Mother of the ForestCyArk

The Redwood Loop Trail Before the 2020 CZU Lightning Fire

The Redwood Loop is one of the most popular hikes in the park with many of the named trees that people have come to know. 

Redwood Loop Trail After the CZU Lightning Fire, March 2021

Redwood Loop trail - Mother of the ForestCyArk

Mother of the Forest Before the CZU Lightning Fire

The Mother and Father of the Forest are among the oldest trees in the park. 

Mother of the Forest After the CZU Lighting Fire, March 2021

Mother of the Forest After CZU Lightning Fire, March 2021

Father of the Forest Before the CZU Lightning Fire

Father of the Forest After CZU Lightning Fire, March 2021

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