Sunday, August 3, 2014

Wildfires, An Equal Opportunity Disaster

We're guessing either Thor (Norse) or Zeus (Greek) didn't want Oregon to feel left out this fire season, so he did his thing Monday, Tuesday AND Wednesday. Southern and Central Oregon was pummeled by lightening storms. Many small smokes were put out and crews across the state are still discovering fires from the storms in remote areas. Copco Road, a private gravel/dirt road about 8 miles east from us took a strike that went from 10 acres when spotted at 11:00 a.m. Thursday morning and roared into almost 27,000 acres by Saturday evening. The residents on Copco went from Level 1 to Level 3 ( Ready, Set, GO are the levels), in the space of three hours. Most homes where saved in the 6000-9000 area and then the Oregon Gulch fire headed out for the really remote areas SE into CA and E into Klamath County. Last night a number of remote little roads with homes also went under Level 3 evacuation in Klamath County. At this point in time we are under a Level 1 evacuation order. If it goes to Level 2, I'm moving the horses, Level 3 the dogs and I will head down the mountain. But for now, we're good and the further south and east this fire goes the better it is for us along Highway 66 in the Greensprings.

Needless to say, I am overwhelmed by the sheer number of people who pick up and come to these things. Wildland firefighters are a hardy, generous bunch and we have over 700 of them from all places near and far. For information on this fire and the resources on it here is a link. This site is mostly where everyone goes for updates. Gene is home getting some much needed rest as are all the members of the Greensprings team. They were first on scene with our local ODF station and worked over 30 hours straight ( on a short night since we had little fires on Weds. night they worked on quelling), on the south side of the fire keeping the evacuees safe in a large irrigated field while they fought to save 6 surrounding homes Thursday night.

The irony of fire season in the dry west; the Oregon Gulch fire is spreading into CA, The CA fire at Happy Camp is moving slowly towards Oregon. I guess you get to give as good as you get.

So, you want to see some pictures? :)

Fire from our front deck, Thursday afternoon.

 Copco Road closure complete with massive smoke plume. It was only at around 1,100 at this time.

 Lots air support.


And lots of smoke if the wind changes.

 Communications are very important.




 Along Copco Road after the fire.



 Fall Creek Ranch, where residents were evacuated too. This area along Copco has numerous springs and marshes. While the property is solar and generator power only they have made good use of the wet conditions with many ponds, streams and irrigation canals. Check out the Hughie Helicopter in the last of the series, scooping water from a fire pond. The smoke plume is quite apparent in a couple of the pics.




 Parting shot: All will be well.

15 comments:

  1. I was wondering what your situation was, thanks for the update, and please, stay safe, get out if you need to, I have an extra bed!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I was going to post about the fire on my blog but hadn't done so yet. You all to the east of us are taking a beating - I'm not sleeping well just worrying about everyone over there, you, other residents and the fire fighters working so hard to try and corral this runaway fire.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I am so sorry...

    (this might be duplicate message...blogger is messing with me.)

    ReplyDelete
  4. Is the truck hooked up to the horse trailer? I evacuated after a dressage show in Bend years ago. The motel gave us wet towels to hang over the halters as we drove throufg tge worst of the smoke and fire. So, you might want to have them handy, and throw in hay etc. I will check with you often.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Thank-you for updating us. You've been on my heart and mind.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Oh dear, I have been very worried about you and yours. Keep us updated, you are all in our prayers.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Thanks for posting the update. I'm a flower on the East Coast, and was concerned when I read how close these fires were to Ashland. Good luck and stay safe.
    Kimmen

    ReplyDelete
  8. Follower, not flower! LOL

    Kimmen

    ReplyDelete
  9. Too Scary! Hopefully you will not have to take all the animals and evacuate. Praying for a nice gentle rain (no lightning) for all of you. Stay safe!!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Oh Theresa, take care and I will be keeping you, yours, and the folks in that area in my thoughts. It sounds like you have a good plan. Hopefully it won't be needed!

    ReplyDelete
  11. So sad. We have fires in the Everglades here, I live only 2 miles from the eastern edge. Breaks my heart to see the loss of flora and fauna. Have been watching the regrowth since a huge fire 4 years ago, at least here things grow very quickly and the recovery is faster. But it is recurrent in our dry season, as in yours. I have a pic of my car covered in ash from a fire in June. Hope you and Gene and all the 'family' get to stay home, and the fires are contained soon.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Thank you all for your positive thoughts and prayers! So far, the fire is still moving SE and E. Some of the north side of the fire and some of the west side have been contained. The folks in Klamath County and south in CA are feeling the brunt right now. Lines are working to keep the fire from spotting across the Klamath River, which would be terrible if it happened.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Fires are so scary and to have one so close to you would be tough. Here's hoping that the fire gets put out soon and that maybe some rain will be heading your way. Stay safe.

    ReplyDelete
  14. To let you know I am praying for you. The Sand fire in El Dorado County CA was very close to me. It was a scarey couple of days. It sounds like you have a solid plan. I hope you don't have to use it.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Come on rain!!! Be safe!!!

    ReplyDelete