Every part of the country has its natural disaster. It doesn’t matter where you live Mother Nature is going to find you with one of her killers; hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes, floods or in my neck of the woods, fire.
It comes every year, some years closer than others. Last year it came very close to the town of Superior with the West Mullan Fire. It burned right to the edge of town but thanks to a barrage of firefighters no houses burned.
Most of the fires that start in the forest are caused by lightening strikes. I live in an area that is surrounded by forest. It’s why it’s so astoundingly beautiful but there is a price for that beauty. Every time a thunderstorm rolls through there is going to be fire. It might be a small fire that causes no trouble but it could be a massive disaster like the Great Fire of 1910 that burned 3 million acres in Washington, Idaho and Montana in a TWO DAY PERIOD. It killed 87 people, mostly firefighters.
THREE MILLION acres in TWO DAYS.
Imagine that if you can.
They say it could happen again with the way conditions are in the forests right now.
So when a fire starts and you live in the forest you worry. You worry if it’s going to spread to where you are. You worry what you are going to do with your pets. I worry because the hubby is out fighting the fire and I am at the house with the goats and the cats and I CAN’T DRIVE. I hope someone remembers me as they are fleeing.
So the other day the pager goes off and I hear “should we go into River Bend?”
I run out onto the deck…
CRAP! CRAP! CRAP!
Crap. It was just up the road. Started by a worker on the bridge using a welding torch. It doesn’t take much this time of year. Then I hear, “fully engulfed shed next to a propane tank.” Bigger crap! I stood watching a bit waiting for the big boom but fortunately that never came. The firemen were able to stop that part of the fire.
But an unoccupied trailer did burn. Then it was, “electric poles on fire. Get the electric company out here.”
OY! If the power went out we would have no water. My biggest fear with a power outage so I ran out to make sure all of the goat buckets and chicken waterers were full. Fortunately power stayed on.
Fire trucks kept coming and coming. And soon I heard the helicopters as they had them dipping out of the river to drop water on the fire. I’d never seen an air response so fast. They are SERIOUS this year about getting them out!
I figured this was going to be a long one so I set to baking and made dozens of muffins for the firemen and started walking them up to the location. I was just about there when one of the tender trucks rolled by and I handed them off which saved me from having to bother anyone at an active fire scene.
A few hours later a small squall whipped through and there was a second call for a lightening started fire on the opposite end of town. A busy night for the poor firemen. Hubby didn’t get home until after 1AM.
The only positive to come out of it was the sunset the next day. Any time there is smoke in the air we get amazing sunsets.
Just before it went behind the mountain it lit up the river like, well fire. So I guess I’ve come full circle somehow. Fire is my natural disaster and it is all around this time of year and yet the fire of the sun can turn my placid river into a sight of stunning beauty.