Monday, August 28, 2006

Of Wild Fires

Skies usually clear are gray and smoky as wild fires burn in our region of the state. With fire crews containing only 10% of the fire, even after fighting for nearly one week, over 103 square miles of wheat fields and forest have been destroyed. Homes have been burned and people displaced. Our beautiful, green spring created perfect conditions for a dry, brittle summer. There is lots of fuel to burn on the hillsides and mountain ranges.

Our cabin is safe, so far, thanks to some diligent fire fighters who worked hard to contain a fire that started by lightening strike near our little abode. Their camp can be seen on a corner of our property; traces of campfire and existence shown by what was left behind. Although the close fires have been extinguished, the road is closed except to local people. Yesterday, ridges that usually are visible and clear, were smoky and muted. Sounds of airplanes in the distance could be heard; fire spotters and paratrooper fire fighters and probably some curious. A DC-10, capable of dumping fire retardant in a mile long pattern made passes over the most uncontrolled portions in an effort to bring an end to the burn of field and forest. Fire fighters from Alaska, New Mexico, Arizona, Oregon, and Washington work hard to contain the fire. Their fire control center in a small town closest to the fire is set up at the fairgrounds and was buzzing with much activity as fire crews come back for food and rest before they went out for another shift of containing fires in shifting winds and dry conditions. And the action continues until containment is realized.

This morning, smoke fills the valley as well. A distance away from the action, smoke settles in for miles and creates havoc on bodies that function best on clean, fresh air! Conditions today are not great for fire control, as the weatherman says it will be near 100 degrees F.

Today I am thankful for fire fighters and those who are working so hard to protect those and their belongings in harms way. My prayers are for them as they continue their work. God bless them!

1 comment:

  1. We're feeling it all the way over here in the sunny Okanagan. Our air quality is poor and I'm sure I saw ash in the air last night. I heard the fire is heading for the border and may cross into Canada. We had a major fire 3 years ago. I think we lost something like 350 houses. Nature can be cruel.


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