Station Fire in California in Google Earth

The LA Times put together a Google Maps map of the Station Fire (or La Canada fire) in the Los Angeles area which you can view in Google Earth in 3D right here . Google Earth is a great tool for getting the full perspective on where a fire is at and what the terrain looks like around the fire. Not only that, but you can load recent satellite imagery overlayed in GE to see where the fire and smoke are going. That’s what GEC member ‘Hill’ posted in this overlay . NASA’s MODIS satellites group are have a shot from 30-August – see here – they are now supporting KML overlays on the page.

Station Fire in 3D in Google Earth

Fire Tracking – Discovered this collection of Google Earth files showing up-to-date fire information on a global basis based on data from NASA’s Modis satellite system. The work is done by the University of Maryland’s FIRMS (Fire Information for Resource Management). The link shows a page where you can select different regions around the Earth. You can choose 24 hour, 48 hour, and a time series for 48 hours (a time animation). They also have a network link for the whole world. Very handy way to find out where the fires are. Watch out for the Africa fire folder though…there are LOTS of fires there!
USFS Fire Maps in Google EarthUS Forest Service Active Fires Map – The USFS has a web site dedicated to tracking active fires. They use a combination of satellites from space which detect the fires, and combine that with ground-based information to produce the maps. All data points are placemarks with further information. Check out the fire map for the continental US which includes the California fires.

About Frank Taylor

Frank Taylor started the Google Earth Blog in July, 2005 shortly after Google Earth was first released. He has worked with 3D computer graphics and VR for many years and was very impressed with this exciting product. Frank completed a 5.5 year circumnavigation of the earth by sailboat in June 2015 which you can read about at Tahina Expedition, and is a licensed pilot, backpacker, diver, and photographer.


  1. We have been reposting the .kml available from as a Google Maps overlay:
    NorthTree GIS

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