[BC Fires, 21 August 2003, Courtesy of MODIS Rapid Response Team, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center]
This image shows the major fires in southern British Columbia, Canada on 21 August 2003. The fire season this year has been the worst in the province's history. Many of the largest fires were near populated centres and hundreds of houses were destroyed along with the forest.

More Information about recent fires in British Columbia

Below are two images taken by the Terra satellite. The first one was taken on 14 August, 2003 at 11:40 AM. The second was taken on the same day, 1 hour and 40 minutes later (one orbit?). Click on each image to see a larger version (each approximately 400 KB).
14 August, 2003.
11:40 PDT.
14 August, 2003.
13:20 PDT.

Here is a link to some spectacular photographs of a fire on Anarchist Mountain near Osoyoos. The fire occurred on 16-18 July, 2003.

The above photograph shows the situation in the interior of British Columbia on 20 August 2003. The huge Okanagan Mountain Park fire which was started by a lightning strike on 16 August 2003 is visible here (well the smoke is--lower left). Approximately one third of Kelowna's residents were evacuated and about 250 homes were destroyed. Click on the picture to see a larger version (1944x1328 pixels, 525 KB). As of the day this was written (31 August) the fire was still not 100 % controlled and covers 200 square kilometres.


Above is a photo from the IKONOS satellite showing the fire in Okanagan Mountain Park near Kelowna. This picture was taken on 21 August 2003 and shows how most of the park has burned. In this false-color infrared image the burned region appears dark greenish grey in the upper portion of image. The dark red regions in the image are unburned forest and the lighter red patches are cleared land. This image shows the southern part of the park with Lake Okanagon partially visible in the bottom left hand corner. In the larger version of the file (large version, 1221x5000 pixels, 2.3 MB) all of southern Okanagan lake is visible with Penticton at the bottom of the image.

Okanagan Mountain Park Fire, 2 September 2003

[2 September 2003, NASA/GSFC/MITI/ERSDAC/JAROS, and U.S./Japan ASTER Science Team]
Image courtesy NASA/GSFC/MITI/ERSDAC/JAROS, and U.S./Japan ASTER Science Team and the NASA Earth Observatory
In this image visible light is combined with data from infrared frequencies. Deep pink is
burned, Smoke (light blue) and areas of active burning (bright pinkish-white)
are visible at the northeast perimeter of the fire. North of the fire is the city of Kelowna.
Vegetation is in various shades of green. Click on the image to download a larger version
of this image (1.4 MB).
Click here for an image showing more of the region (3.3 MB).
Click here to se the same region in visible light only (2.2 MB).

More Links

The Canadian Wildland Fire Information System
MODIS Rapid Response System
NASA Earth Observatory

All satellite imagery on this page is courtesy of the MODIS Rapid Response Team, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center unless otherwise noted.
UVic / SEOS / Climate Group / About Front Page Picture Last updated: Tuesday, 31-May-2005 10:58:14 PDT