4 famous giant trees unscathed from the Sequoia National Park fire | Scientific news

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THREE RIVERS, Calif. (AP) – Four famous giant redwoods were uninjured by a wildfire that reached the edge of the giant forest in Sequoia National Park in California, authorities said.

The four guards, a group of trees that form a natural gateway to the road to the forest, were successfully protected from the KNP complex fire by clearing nearby vegetation and winding up a fire-retardant material around the base of the trees, the firefighting team said in a statement on Sunday.

The KNP complex began as two lightning-triggered fires that eventually merged and burned more than 37 square miles (96 square kilometers) in the heart of redwood country on the western slope of the Sierra Nevada.

However, there was no immediate word on the extent of the damage in several other redwood groves affected by a separate fire, the Windy Fire, in the Giant Sequoia National Monument area of ​​the Sequoia National Forest and the Tule River Indian Reservation.

The Windy Fire burned the groves of Peyrone and Red Hill, as well as part of Long Meadow Grove along the 100 Giants Trail.

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Part of a giant sequoia along the trail was confirmed to have burned down, said Gunnery Command spokesman Thanh Nguyen.

Fire crews with hoses and water drop helicopters were working to limit damage to the giant sequoias in the groves, where other types of trees are also found.

Redwoods have adapted to fire and can benefit from it if the flames are low.

The Windy Fire burned over 39 square miles (101 square kilometers) and was only 4% contained.

The KNP complex forced the evacuation of Sequoia National Park last week and on Sunday much of the adjacent Kings Canyon National Park was closed. Visitors to areas still open have been warned of dangerous air quality due to the smoke.

Much of northern California was under the red flag of extreme fire danger Monday due to dry offshore winds that can increase the fire danger.

The warning did not extend to southern California, but forecasters said there would be light winds in Santa Ana and significant warming – increasing the risk of wildfires.

Historic drought related to climate change makes forest fires more difficult to fight. He killed millions of trees in California alone. Scientists say climate change has made the West much hotter and drier over the past 30 years and will continue to make weather conditions more extreme and forest fires more frequent and destructive.

More than 7,000 California wildfires this year have damaged or destroyed more than 3,000 homes and other buildings and burned down more than 3,000 square miles (7,770 square kilometers) of land, according to the California Department of Forestry and Protection against fires.

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