Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone National Park was on fire in 1988

April 28, 2008, 12:02 pm

This year has been a wet Spring at Yellowstone National Park, with the most snow in a dozen years hitting the ground. The conditions are pretty similar to how it was at the park 20 years ago, just before the biggest fires in its history.

That's not to suggest we're due for a repeat of the fires of 1988, but it does show just how fast we can go from wet to tinder dry.

"The pattern of wetting and drying is what drives fires" explains ASU Fire Researcher Steve Payne. "So we go through an annual cycle inv the West, then we have droughts on top of that."