Well... we're back home.
After a so-so night and complimentary breakfast at the Best Western, Chloe and I ventured over to her school to get her school day started. Clearly, the wildfire was THE topic of conversation, and I was able to catch up with some neighbors to see how their nights were. Once the kids were in the school, a neighbor and I got back in the car to go see what the neighborhood looked like. And it didn't take long, though we were still about 1.5 miles away, to see that the fire had spread quite a bit since we left our homes last night. Thankfully, no homes were lost in our neighborhood, but fire did creep right up to the northern and western borders. Some homeowners will come home to charred grass right across the street from their home.
Once Peg checked out of the hotel and came home, we drove north out of town to see the extent of the fire and couldn't believe our eyes... about how much of the foothills and adjacent plains burned, and how great of a job the firefighters did in protecting homes, businesses, barns, etc. given the strong winds. (For a great video clip showing what the firefighters were up against with the wind, watch this.)
It was then back to the house to unpack what we loaded in the cars about 15 hours prior. At this point we had a lighthearted moment as we found out out some of the items Chloe thought were key to take along for our evacuation. In her backpack, we found these items: a couple of Chamberlain's chew toys, math flash cards, a miniature football, bracelets, stuffed animals, and lip gloss. (Peggy packed the other "essentials" for her... clothing, toiletries, etc.)
The latest news reports had these figures on the fire:
- Approximately 1,400 acres, within a 3,600 acre area, burned.
- One home and one large structure completely lost, one home partially damaged. Three barns and several other outbuildings and small structures were also consumed in the fire.
- One police officer and two firefighters have been treated for minor injuries.
To view pictures I took:
- click here (I posted them on shutterfly... you do not need an account to view them.)
- then click on "View Album" (near the bottom of the page)
- then click on "Detail View" (near the top of the page) and read the captions on the right.
- then click on the left/right arrows to scroll through.