City Creek Nature Notes – Salt Lake City

September 20, 2016

August 6th

Filed under: Ensign Peak, Fire, Meadow Mile 1.3, Red-Rumped Bumblee Bee, Sunflower, Weather — canopus56 @ 10:45 pm

Fire Below Ensign Peak

August 6th 6 p.m. The sky is overcast. A summer storm is coming in. Thunder rumbles in the clouds. A small brush fire, started by a lightning strike, is climbing up Ensign Peak to the Mormon “This is the Planet Nebo” marker. As I jog up the canyon, a light rain starts. I take off my shirt and enjoy the soft falling water. The air smells of the Ensign Peak fire. As with most summer storms in the Wasatch, it only lasts a short period. The wind blows the front through and the air clears. The Sun comes out; the brush fire is over. It comes close to homes and to some hikers, but thankfully there is no damage to property or injury to people. Where are the fires located, most wildlife can avoid the flames. Squirrels and small birds can simply move aside. Burrowing life, like field mice and insects go underground. Invigorated by the rejuvenating dampness, wild bumble bees with red-orange banded abdomens work sunflowers next to the road at milepost 1.3. Their work will reseed these plants for the next season. Life’s dramatic cycle of destruction and renewal repeat in this small way in the canyon.

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