"Where's the fire?," were the first words out of Camille's mouth as she rushed up to my door about noon yesterday. I'd heard a couple of small planes pass over, but just the once so I hadn't been too concerned and had not gone out to look. She'd seen smoke, but living down in the cut as she does, couldn't find the source and had come up for a better vantage point. Out on the deck, we saw plumes rising in the northwest not too far distant. Not in immediate danger, I turned to a channel that was just breaking news of a wildfire in Somerset on Sand Ridge Road south of Bucks Bar, only six to ten miles away. Kellan and William live on Sand Ridge and I quickly called to see if they needed help in any way. They were downwind south of the fire and were all right. The fire crews were able to contain the fire to about fifteen acres, but it had jumped Mt. Aukum Road at one point and that could have put us in harm's way. No homes had burned, according to this morning's news, and the fire is under control.
The long, hot, dry summer has left this area a tinderbox of dry brush and the thought of fire is never far from mind. We've been very lucky the past few years locally (Oakstone notwithstanding). I think everyone has a contingency plan for evacuation. I am so grateful that Joel disks the south pasture before the weeds get tall and dry. I have some stubborn star thistle in a pathway that I will not mow down now for fear of hitting a rock and throwing a spark. Thistles are an inconvenience; fire would be a tragedy.