Wednesday, June 20, 2012

The fires are out of control this year.

We're still contending with the Whitewater-Baldy fire (several hundred thousand acres burned so far), the Little Bear fire (tens of thousands of acres), one north of Santa Fe, another just north of my home, and now, this one that I just drove through.  It's raging up through the valley right now and growing.  It's near the main gas lines and is nearing numerous structures.  The pics below were shot from a vantage point in front of my house, looking just under 6 miles East.  The fire only started an hour or so prior to these shots that I grabbed going home. 
We are in a severe drought and everything in that valley area is just fuel for the fire.  No rain in sight, and intermittent high winds.  We have 3% humidity, 100 degree temps, and the winds are expected to reach 25mph with gusts up to 50mph starting tonight/tomorrow.  As you can imagine, this kind of thing obviously kills astrophotography, but in our case out here, it has a tendency to destroy a lot of lives.  Now we're praying because fires that start in the Bosque as we call it tend to rage out of control quite fast.  It's spread I'd guess about 4-5 miles in one direction, and it has hopped the valley from one side of the river to the other, so maybe a mile or so wide, and growing fast.  Winds will shift towards my home by the early AM.  I'll shoot more pics tonight and in the morning to get an idea of how much ground the fire has gained or lost.

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