Wildland Firefighting

Clare has worked as a firefighter on over 25 wildfires in 6 different states.

During the 2012 and 2013 fire seasons, Clare worked as a wildland firefighter on the Kings Peak Wildland Fire Module, a crew based out of the Ashley National Forest in Utah. As a firefighter on Kings Peak, Clare dug line, lit prescribed fires and back burns, gathered fire and weather data, ran a chainsaw and more. She worked with engines, helitack crews, hotshot crews, handcrews and smoke jumpers while receiving training and mentorship from veteran firefighters.

During her third season in 2015, Clare worked as the lookout at Ute Fire Tower, one of the last remaining fire towers in Utah, while also working as a firefighter on a Type 4 Engine on the Ashley National Forest.

As lookout, Clare created an interpretive program about the fire tower while also collaborating on the homing pigeon project. This ambitious project sought to educate the public about the Forest Service’s historical use of homing pigeons as messengers by recreating one such flock at the Ute Fire Tower. Besides tending and training these homing pigeons, Clare also worked with the Ashley National Forest’s blaster, packer, archaeologist and public affairs officer on various projects.

Clare is currently writing a wildfire memoir about these experiences.