Tag Archive: wildfires


The Late Show with Stephen Colbert welcomes Coyote Peterson, star of “Coyote Peterson: Brave the Wild,” draws attention to the plight of the wildlife in Australia by introducing our host to a wallaby, a sugar glider and a kangaroo. For information on how you can help support the wildlife of Australia in the aftermath of devastating wildfires, visit http://www.colbertlateshow.com/australia.

Wyoming Hotshots patrolling a controlled burn near Custer, South Dakota, by photographer Kyle Miller.

A huge thunderstorm near Port Hedland, Western Australia, lighting bushfires.

Strange bedfellows.

Yesterday the fire departments conducted a controlled burn on nearby Middle Peak:

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Volunteer firefighter Ben Wilson attached a GoPro to his person to capture some first-person video as he helped battle a bushfire that engulfed the Adelaide Hills mountain range in South Australia. GoPro is using the video to help raise funds for the South Australian Country Fire Service.

Wildfires behind Half Dome in Yosemite by photographer Judge Helbig.

wildfires-half dome-yosemite_Judge Helbig

A firefighter selfie taken taken by Tim Bergen on May 15, 2014, while working the Cocos fire in San Marcos, CA.

140515 cocos fire selfie-san marcos ca-tim bergen

CalFire was conducting a prescribed controlled burn yesterday on the south side of Middle Peak. It got alarmingly large, but they kept it under control. The smoke cloud was HUGE – it looked like a nuclear mushroom cloud. Luckily, the wind was blowing all the smoke away from here, at least until last night. I woke up and closed all the windows before the house filled up with smoke.

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We had another fire nearby yesterday afternoon. It was on the west slope of North Peak, less than a mile away as the crow flies. Rich went to direct traffic on Engineers Road, while I stayed home and took pictures of the aerial assault. The fire was coming up a draw, and the smoke was fairly wispy, and the wind was out of the west, so it was moving away from us.

Wispy smoke

Wispy smoke

As usual, Cal Fire stomped on it hard and fast. Two small spotter planes circled constantly:

These little guys were almost impossible to see on the camera's screen.

These little guys were almost impossible to see on the camera’s screen.

Then a much larger water bomber joined the party:

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Doing some aerial acrobatics, dipping low between the ridgelines to get at the draw:

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Then a Cal Fire water bombing helicopter started drawing from Lake Cuyamaca and doing drops:

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It was getting pretty noisy by then.

It was getting pretty noisy by then.

Cisco wondered what all the commotion was all about, then took a selfie.

"What's going on?!?"

“What’s going on?!?”

Finally, a Sheriff’s water bombing helicopter joined in as well:

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Rich had called to say I should come out for a better view, but I didn’t want to clog up the streets unnecessarily. He came home a couple hours later and we went up to High Hill Road for an overview. BTW, this was started by a lightning strike from a storm we had two days before. It just smoldered until the brush had dried out enough to smoke.

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When I saw all the trucks lined up on Engineers, I was glad I didn’t come out as Rich had suggested:

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You can see the Cal Fire crew (in yellow) and La Cima crew (in orange) down in the brush. La Cima firefighters are actually inmates learning a skill and shaving up to a third off their sentences. They do amazing work.

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