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Type: Report
Author(s): Carol M. Ewell; Mark Courson; Alicia L. Reiner; Chelsea Morgan; Matthew B. Dickinson; William Borovicka; Hannah Key; Benjamin S. Hornsby; Chris R. Mallek; Scott N. Dailey
Publication Date: 2015

This report contains the results of a one and a half week assessment of fire behavior, vegetation and fuel loading, consumption, and fire effects for the King Fire. The King fire started on September 13th, 2014 due to arson. The fire started near Pollock Pines, CA and grew to over 97,000 acres. The fire ran an amazing 15 miles to the northeast towards Desolation Wilderness between September 17th and 18th. The fire destroyed 12 homes and 68 minor structures, caused the evacuation of several thousand residents, and air quality impacts for a large area. Fuels and vegetation plots and fire behavior equipment were installed at 10 locations in the vicinity of the King fire, but only three were burned by the fire. FBAT installed plots between September 17th and 23rd. Fire growth was significant in the first three days of burning and then slowed with changes in weather. Three plots burned in the days following the large run when there was minimal fire perimeter growth. 

The King Fire Incident Management Team used the fuel moistures data immediately. FBAT also gathered heat flux data with newly calibrated equipment which will form part of a growing dataset used to develop improved firefighter safety zone guidelines. FBAT also beta-tested a new soils sampling protocol and sent several soil samples off to collaborators at Michigan State University for analysis, the first steps in integrating soil nutrient and black carbon effects into FBAT protocols. FBAT also collected integrated fuels, consumption, fire effects and fire behavior data which will be used along with data from other fires and years to evaluate and possibly calibrate fire behavior or fire effects models. The King fire burned during drought conditions resulting in high fuel consumption and intense fire behavior. The data collected by FBAT will be used to improve understanding of fires burning under these extreme conditions.

Online Links
Link to this document (2.1 MB; pdf)
Citation: Ewell, Carol M. et al. 2014. 2014 King Fire, Eldorado National Forest: Fire Behavior Assessment Team Summary Report. USDA Forest Service Fire Behavior Assessment Team. 29 p.

Cataloging Information

  • 2014 King Fire
  • California
  • El Dorado County
  • Eldorado National Forest
Record Last Modified:
Record Maintained By: FRAMES Staff (
FRAMES Record Number: 63921