The Rocky Mountains are on fire •

The Rocky Mountains are on fire. Today’s Image of the Day from NASA Earth Observatory shows smoke streaming over the Rocky Mountains from the East Troublesome fire, which has now burned through more than 190,000 acres. 

A small fire that was ignited north of Hot Sulphur Springs on October 14th quickly exploded into the second largest fire in Colorado’s history in just ten days. 

On October 21, the fire grew from 30,000 to 170,000 acres within 24 hours as a result of strong winds. 

In the Rocky Mountains, the fire has burned quickly through lodgepole pine forests, which had already been weakened by drought and an infestation of bark beetles, according to NASA.

The fire has destroyed hundreds of homes and has claimed at least two lives. The Rocky Mountains, also known as the Rockies, are a major mountain range in western North America. The Rocky Mountains stretch 3,000 mi (4,800 km)[1] in straight-line distance from the northernmost part of British Columbia, in western Canada, to New Mexico in the Southwestern United States. The northern terminus is located in the Liard River area east of the Pacific Coast Ranges, while the southernmost point is near the Albuquerque area adjacent the Rio Grande Basin and north of the Sandia–Manzano Mountain Range. Located within the North American Cordillera, the Rockies are distinct from the Cascade Range and the Sierra Nevada, which all lie farther to the west.

The image was captured on October 22 by the Operational Land Imager (OLI) on Landsat 8.

Image Credit: NASA Earth Observatory 

By Chrissy Sexton, Staff Writer

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