The summer months in western Canada are now synonymous with wildfires burning over vast tracts of land. Whether the increased size and destruction of these fires are attributed to climate change, mismanagement of our forest resources, or a combination of factors is still to be determined. What we do know is that our warmest months are now being dominated by these powerful and deadly blazes.
Previously, I was fortunate to get a glimpse at a day in the life of a Wildland Firefighter and the rigorous work they do protecting people, property, and communities. I also wrote extensively about the Black Rock Fire Lookout, which has been standing on the summit since 1928 and is accessible if you’re up for an adventure. What follows here is a look at some historical wildfires from across Alberta and a few of the early techniques at combating them.
As you enjoy the following photographs please keep in mind the devastation wildfires have caused and the tireless work put forth in an attempt to extinguish them. Next time you meet a Wildland Firefighter please thank them for the incredible work they do.
As always if you see a wildfire burning call 310-FIRE as quickly as possible. The earlier the fire is reported, the sooner crews can get there, and the easier it will be to contain.
The photos above were collected from the Glenbow Archives. Additional information can be found for each photograph on the Glenbow website by searching the identification number that is printed on each photo. There is also the option to purchase a high resolution copy. Stay tuned for additional posts featuring historical photos from across Alberta. We’d love to know what you think in the comment section below.