Wednesday, July 29, 2009

More Fire Activity

It seems we've had fires for the last month and things aren't slowing down.  The Mt. McLean fire is threatening Shalath and Seton Portage but I think Lillooet is out of danger, or at least if the winds cooperate.  The fire that has us concerned, out here on the ranch, is the Della Creek fire (I'm not sure what the Forestry is calling it).  It's across the river from us and down a bit towards Lytton but one gets nervous when a fire is only about five kilometres away.

On Monday Sydney and I drove down and it looked like this:

Della Creek Fire Lillooet

But it's flared up quite a bit and this morning it looked a lot worse.

Della Creek Fire

Those fuel tanks are in our yard, and although a long way from the fire, you can see why I'm a little nervous when I look up the mountain, it seems soooo close.  I'm hoping the forestry gets a control on it before it climbs over the ridge.

This afternoon Hubby and I took a drive down and I caught pics of the K-Max chopper dipping a bucket into fire retardant.  You can see the smoke from the fire in the background.  The forestry has set up a staging area at Ruddocks Ranch where the choppers can fuel up, get water or retardant, and fly off again.

K-Max Chopper

The pilot leans into his window and dips his bucket into a large pail of fire retardant, although it sure doesn't seem big when they drop that little teeny bucket on the fires.

K-Max Chopper

I was shocked when the K-Max turned and I saw how skinny it was, it hardly looks as if one guy can squeeze in there :)

K-Max Chopper

While we were out on the highway we spotted the flames candling along the trees.  For us to see the flames from the road they have to be pretty darn big!

Della Creek Fire

The size of the fire has sure increased since it started and I'm really praying for rain... and no lightning :)

Della Creek Fire

Yesterday I drove into Lillooet and Dallas and I went into the CN Rail (formerly BC Rail) yard and snapped pics looking down at Ainsworth Lumber Mill yard.  One of the choppers is dipping his bucket into the retardant.

Fire Retardant

Just as we were heading out of the rail yard we spotted the Sky Crane helicopter coming from the Mt. McLean fire and heading to the Airport.

Sky Crane

You should have seen Dallas and I, it was actually kind of funny,.  I slam the truck into park, we grab our cameras (telephoto lenses on), both doors whip open and we're hanging off the running boards snapping away on the dirt road.  We must've looked a sight!  But anything for a good pic, right? lol

So a lot of my time is watching the fire in Lillooet, and then looking in the opposite direction towards Lytton... it makes for a very smoky atmosphere around here.  The heat is almost unbearable and the weather report says we are not going to cool down much.  I think that Hubby is going to clean out one of my deep freezers and sleep in it soon if it doesn't cool off.

I put together a video of the helicopters dipping for fire retardant and if you can't view it at my blog visit YouTube.

I haven't been posting all the pictures at my blog (it would take forever to load) so for more pictures visit my Flickr site.


Moonshadow said...

Those helicopter pilots are pretty skillful to be able to drop that swinging bucket into the little tank. I realize that it's probably not THAT little, but it's still a small target from up in the air.

Stay safe, Kansas. You and yours will be in my thoughts and prayers. Wish I could send you some of the rain and cool air that we've been having lately.

Anonymous said...

Awesome Pictures!

DaviMack said...

Awesome pics, Kansas. I've been watching 'em go by on Flickr, and they're just ... amazing. Hope the fires clear up soon, but thanks for the pictures of them!

Anonymous said...

It's like another world compared to here in northern England which is cloudy and pretty cool today. Take care guys
Tracey (Northernlass1)

jackie said...

I am so impressed with the skill of the chopper pilots. I really wish that I could send you some of our rain. 30 mm last night alone and about 10 more this evening.
Keep safe.