Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Deceptively Serene...

...for the time being
Click on photos to enlarge - © 2007 jim otterstrom
Looking north across Stanfield Marsh

Big Bear was deceptively calm at 7:20 this morning considering that the raging 'Slide' & 'Grass Valley' fires are burning just about 20 miles west of here. Hundreds of homes have been destroyed in those mountain communities nearest to our valley. We have good friends in both the Running Springs and Lake Arrowhead areas and I hope they haven't lost their homes. Yet more homes are surely burning even as I post this picture of tranquility.

A View to the west from the same location
An ominous layer of dark smoke lies over the San Bernardino Mountains west of the Big Bear Dam where much destruction is occurring. Because of the Santa Ana winds that have been blowing from the northeast, fanning these fires, we have had smoke free blue skies here throughtout the firestorms but that may be about to change.

The Santa Ana's have died down now and we'll most likely return to our normal westerly winds which will bring the smoke directly into big Bear.

A Rising Plume
This shot was made 15 minutes later & a 1/4 of a mile farther west along the shore of the marsh.
A plume of smoke begins rising in the general direction of Lake Arrowhead and I suspect that before today is over Big Bear will be a very smoky place.

Hopefully we won't get any strong westerlies or we may be in trouble here.

Very large fires are burning right over there and last I heard they were zero percent contained.

See post below for an update

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Blogger arcolaura said...

I have been shaking my head at the numbers, staring at the images, but the whole perspective changes when I hear it from someone I know, looking at it directly. Best wishes, Jim and Peggy - I hope for the best for you and everyone there.

12:18 PM  
Blogger uncle leo said...

i was watching cnn about 8:30 pm eastern time last night. as i watched the map, i noticed it was getting kind of close to your place. i hope everyone is ok and your cabin is not damaged.

1:28 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

I've been sending good thoughts your way and i hope the fires stay clear of you and your wonderful garden and cabin.

5:55 PM  
Blogger Jim said...

Thanks you guys, we're all OK thus far, and barring any radical wind events, Big Bear should survive once again.

We've been very lucky here...

12:38 PM  

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