Black Forest and Waldo Canyon Burn Scars Visible from Space

Posted: Feb 27, 2014 by Sam Szarka

NASA satellite captures space image showing the extent of the damage of the fires of 2012 and 2013

Waldo Canyon Fire

Waldo Canyon Fire

On Feb 11, 2013, NASA released this stunning, nearly cloudless composite image of the United States produced by the LANDSAT 8 satellite. The release was timed  by NASA to commemorate the first anniversary of the LANDSAT 8 earth observation satellite. NASA carefully stitched this image together from hundreds of separate satellite photographs to produce a nearly cloudless image of the United States. LANDSAT 8 is an earth observing satellite used by governmental agencies and scientists to measure and monitor changes to the earth and land.

Close examination of the composite image reveals the Waldo Canyon and Black Forest burn scars that are clearly visible as brown dark spots northeast and northwest of the city of Colorado Springs. The Waldo Canyon morphed from a small forest fire into raging inferno that threatened the western suburbs of Colorado Springs. On June 26, 2012 the fire broke through fire containment lines and destroyed 346 homes and caused over 450 million in damage in the northwest part of the city. Only a year later, on June 11th, the Black Forest Fire burned through the affluent rural community of Black Forest to the north east of Colorado Springs. Officials named the Black Forest Fire the costliest fire in Colorado history after it destroyed 509 homes and killed two people.

Waldo Canyon and Black Forest Burn Scar Satellite Image

Waldo Canyon and Black Forest Burn Scars Highlighted

Waldo Canyon and Black Forest Burn Scars Highlighted

Landsat 8 Image of Colorado

LANDSAT 8 Image of Colorado

LANDSAT 8 Image of Colorado – CREDIT: NASA,