Bud Brings Relief to the West
By Don Day, Jr., Meteorologist
The wildfire season was off to a bad start in portions of the Central and Southern Rockies in early June. Major wildfires have burned thousands of acres in Colorado, Wyoming, Utah, New Mexico, Arizona, and other states, including Alaska.
The biggest wildfires were in Colorado, Utah and Wyoming, as very dry conditions during the first two weeks of June developed in those states. In addition to the dry conditions in early June, Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona and Utah had a very dry winter.
However, firefighting crews out west got a big help from what was left of Hurricane Bud over the past weekend. The right set of circumstances came together to draw what was left of an eastern Pacific hurricane (Bud) northward through Mexico and into the Southern and Central Rockies over this past weekend.
While it is not unusual to have the remains of tropical storms or hurricanes to move into the western states during summer or fall, it is a bit unusual to have it happen this early in the summer season. Often it is late summer or fall when Pacific hurricanes can sometimes move through Mexico and into the Desert Southwest and Rockies.
Over this past weekend, heavy rains, high humidity and thick cloud cover went a long way to help battle the wildfires in the west as well as hopefully reducing the fire danger for at least a short period of time.