Fireweed is a wild flower that grows in many areas of Alaska. We were introduced to it during our 6-hour ride to the Back Country Lodge deep inside Denali National Park. The guide informed us that the plant blooms from the bottom of the stalk up. The lore is that the number of inches to the top of the stalk is how many weeks before the first snowfall.
He said one year they did not pay attention and ended up having to fly out from the small airfield located near the lodge, as the roads became impassible with a mid August storm.