Smokey Bear’s world is on fire. But the old mascot won’t die.
The real Smokey Bear narrowly avoided death in the pine-filled Capitan Mountains of New Mexico, nearly 70 years ago.
Just west of the town of Roswell, firefighters found the bear cub clutching to the upper reaches of a tree, with singed paws and legs. The stranded black bear would almost certainly have perished amid the ashy land, but foresters saved him, and ultimately brought the tiny omnivore to the National Zoo in Washington D.C.
Here, the newly named “Smokey Bear” lived out his domesticated life, well beyond the wild threats of the American West, where forests burn, and indomitable fires are king. Read more…