Wildfires can be really sneaky and often begin unnoticed. They are usually triggered by lightning or accidents that most times are caused by irresponsible people. They spread quickly, igniting brush, trees, and homes, destroying thousands of acres of virgin land and killing innocent people. So next time you go camping or visit the forest make sure to put out your cigarette first or douse the campfire because the 25 wildfires that follow will hopefully help you realize that the consequences of an unmanageable wildfire can be terrifying, chaotic, and devastating.
The 1921 Mari Wildfires
The wildfires in the Mari Autonomous Oblast, in the eastern part of European Russia, occurred in the summer of 1921 and burned thousands of acres of pine forest. The wildfires claimed the lives of thirty-five humans and one thousand cattle. About sixty small villages were destroyed.
The Wallow Fire
The Wallow Fire took its name from the Bear Wallow Wilderness area in eastern Arizona where the fire originated. The fire was started by an abandoned campfire on June 26, 2011. It burned about 841 square miles (2,180 km2) in the Apache, Greenlee, Graham, and Navajo counties in Arizona and Catron County in New Mexico. Thankfully, and despite being the biggest fire recorded in Arizona history, no one died but over six thousand people were evacuated.
The Great Porcupine Fire
The Great Porcupine Fire of 1911 was one of the most devastating forest fires ever to strike the Ontario Northland, in Canada. Spring had come early that year, followed by an abnormally hot dry spell that lasted into the summer. This created ideal conditions for the ensuing disaster, in which a number of smaller fires converged. It is estimated that due to the wildfire more than 500,000 acres of forest were completely burned and at least seventy people died though early reports indicated hundreds were dead.
The Black Dragon Fire
The Black Dragon Fire occurred in 1987 and burned a total of 72,884 square kilometers (28,141 sq mi) of forest along the Amur River in China. It completely destroyed three million acres of pristine forest reserves in China (15 million in Russia) and left behind an astonishing economic disaster.
The Great Miramichi Fire
The Great Miramichi Fire happened on October 7, 1825, and is solemnly remembered by the residents of Miramichi, Canada. The fire was so intense and uncontrollable that it destroyed over six thousand square miles in less than eight hours.