Hot Shots : NPS Fire Photos of 2005

Last week, the National Park Service announced the winners of their 4th annual fire photo contest. Don't be surprised if you've never heard of the contest though. It is only open to folks working inside our national parks who are fighting fires. The contest was originally started to find a good photo to put on the front cover of the annual fire report. Today it makes for a great opportunity to see some interesting photos taken around the country during fire season, and an opportunity to learn a little bit more about fire management in the process. The winners of this year's contest, Ted Young and Jody Lyle, not only get their photo on the cover of the annual report, they also get a gift bag with items from National Interagency Fire Center (NIFC). Special thanks to Tina Boehle of the Park Service for providing the photos for us to enjoy. To learn a little more about the National Parks and fire, have a look at their website: NPS Fire Management

Update! It turns out that I made a couple mistakes in the paragraph above. Tina wrote me this morning with a few corrections. She writes: "The contest is open to anyone - the only stipulation is that they were taken in an NPS area and any people in the photo are wearing proper protective equipment (PPE) - if there is improper PPE, the photo is disqualified. I announce the contest on NPS Digest and it's picked up for the Morning Report, so, if a member of the public has a photo of a fire or a fire management photo (i.e. scientists doing pre-work before a prescribed fire, etc.) in an NPS area they are perfectly welcome to submit them. Also, we are currently not doing a formal annual report, so I will try to get the winning photo on some other publication if I can."

Winner - Quarry Prescribed Fire in Sequoia National Park
Sequoia Kings Canyon Fire : Ted Young photographer
Photographer: Ted Young
Location: Sequoia & Kings National Park
Description: Research shows that giant sequoia groves survived regular fires throughout history, every 5-20 years on average. The Quarry Prescribed Fire was an important link in maintaining the natural fire cycle in Giant Forest. Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks have been conducting prescribed fires since 1969 and many positive results have been observed. Thousands of giant sequoia seedlings are now growing in sunny areas that used to be shady and densely packed with trees in the absence of fire.


2nd Place - Dragon Wildland Fire Use
Grand Canyon Fire : Warren Bielenberg photographer
Photographer: Warren Bielenberg
Location: Grand Canyon National Park


3rd Place - North Terrace Prescribed Fire
Devils Tower Fire : Jim Cheatham photographer

Photographer: Jim Cheatham
Location: Devils Tower National Monument


3rd Place - Are you a Fireman?
Grand Canyon Fire : Warren Bielenberg photographer
Photographer: Warren Bielenberg
Location: Grand Canyon National Park


3rd Place - Fire Monitor Tracks Comb Fire
Sequoia Kings Canyon Fire : Ted Young photographer
Photographer: Ted Young
Location: Sequoia & Kings National Park


Well, which one is your favorite? I really like the winning shot. There is good lighting, and it's a nice composition. But, I think my favorite one is with the little kid with his own tiny fire hat talking to the Park Service firefighter.