Monday, May 9, 2011

Fire above Forest Falls

Photo courtesy of John Katena

Photo courtesy of John Katena
Yesterday afternoon we heard a helicopter flying around - we figured it was looking for a lost hiker (a common occurrence) or something "normal."  After about an hour, Don looked out the window and said, "Take a look at those clouds - those aren't clouds, are they?"  I looked, and said, "Nope. That's smoke."  We went outside, and saw that a fire had broken out on the side of the mountain in Lost Creek Canyon, about 2 miles from our house.  It's up at about 8,000' (we live at 6,000').  We were joined by our neighbors for a while, and my neighbor John took these photos.  I'd love to claim them, but my camera isn't powerful enough. These were taken from our front steps.

The fire must have been started by a careless hiker, since it's situated along the connector trail between Momyer/Alger Creek and Vivian Creek in the San Gorgonio Wilderness.  It was pretty close to Dobbs Creek.  

The wind was blowing the fire mostly towards the east, but a few spot fires kept breaking out downhill. Those eventually were put out by a couple of water drops (we think) and we went back inside after we saw the third helicopter join the fight. After about 3 hours we no longer heard any helicopters, so we figured it was out or mostly out.

This morning, on my way to work, I saw several dozens of fire units parked in the Momyer Creek parking lot - and lots of crew getting ready to hike up to the fire.  Since the fire is in a wilderness area, no mechanized equipment is allowed - no ATVs, no saws - just shovels and pulaskis wielded by firefighters on foot.  I'm assuming they're going up to put out spots and smolders to make sure the fire is completely out.


Merikay said...

I don't think people in the East and mid West understand how often fires ravage our hills out here. It is natural sometimes, and sometimes caused by careless mankind.

Hope you are always safe.

Chuck and Anneke's RV travels said...

That could be a little scary when it is so close. Glad they got the fires out quickly.

Rustedgranny said...

Thank goodness the fires stayed away from you and yours. I see your only 20 days away from hitting the road. But the excitement is high, know mine is!
Retirement is my new favorite word!