Tuesday, June 26, 2012

The Waldo Canyon Fire

The Waldo Canyon Fire, as the fire here in Colorado Springs is named, continued 
to burn today, belching alternating clouds of white, and then dense, black smoke.

We woke up to a foggy smoke filled world but as the day progressed the
winds picked up strongly from the South, as they have the past several days, and
the winds blew the smoke away.

The fire has now burned over 5,000 acres.  For reference, one square mile is
640 acres so we are talking almost 8 square miles of forest that has burned so
far and the fire is only 5% contained.

A wider view of the fire.

The black smoke is indicative of heavy timber burning.
The crowns of the pine trees flare up - their sap burning instantly like a torch
sending orange flames and black smoke billowing skyward.

All types of Aircraft are flying low - at treetop level.

The helicopters scoop up water at nearby reservoirs and dump it at
pin point locations.

The fixed wing aircraft which include the Big Boys - The C130's - lay
down fire retardant which is colored red in order for the pilots
to see where their load dropped allowing them to adjust their flight
path on the next pass.

Below is a video we shot today of some of the Aircraft doing their work.

If the video does not show up in your email,

Click or copy/paste the link below to view it in UTube: 


The weather here has been hellish!

Sunday we set an all time high temperature record in C-Springs  100 degrees...
Not a record high for the day - but the highest temperature ever... 

Monday we tied that new record.
Today we set a new all time high of 101.

Thru this all the winds have been blowing gusts in the 30's fanning the flames.
Not good weather for fighting a forest fire.

A cumulus cloud is one of those puffy white clouds that you get on a nice day...
They are formed by rising warm air currents.

The white cloud behind the smoke in the picture below is called
a pyrocumulus cloud.

It is formed from the intense heat of the burning forest.

Tomorrow we pick up camp again and head north 70 miles to Denver.
I've just heard on the news that a new fire has broken out just west of Boulder
which is 20 miles N of where we will be.

We need some rain!


  1. Be careful - we've spent time in the area that you are in, have friends in Monument and up near Waldo. Terrain is such that you can get trapped without even trying.

    Heat is awesome. Lesley's mom does not have AC and with the temperatures and smoke wonder how she is getting bye!

    1. We're staying safe... Casualty of the day was the circuit board in my DSLR. I'm going to order a new Nikon and when I get home replace the board in my old one.

      Fire & Smoke is getting worse. Cars in places need headlights to get around at 5pm!

      So far only one house burned so that's good. If this wind doesn't lay down I think this could be bad.


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