Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Burned Over Meadow

Fairy tales begin with "Once upon a time", disaster stories around the K-Bar usually begin with "One day Dad decided to ___". This is the story of the Burned Over Meadow, also known as the burned over area.
One day Dad decided to burn some brush piles left after logging. I need to confess that I was not home during this catastrophe, I was away at school. I put together the story from the participants, primarily my brother Bob and Dad. The brush piles in question were over a year old, so they were dry. It was in January, and the winter had been wet, emphasise on been. It was now dry and windy, perfect to burn. My brothers attempted to talk reason to Dad, but his mind was made up.
Papa was there to help and began to clear a fire row with a hand rake as the rest threw diesel on the wood and set the piles ablaze. The pile burned well, what with a good west wind fanning the flames. The wood burned so well that things got out of control and soon the woods were on fire. Dad blames it all on the hand rake breaking, but the dry windy conditions probably had something to do with it. Papa left to get Mama packed and to safety, he knew the fire would not stop until it hit a major highway, (Papa was not always optimistic.)
Eventually the US Forest service arrived with some volunteer firemen. They used a dozer to clear lanes and with many men put out the forest fire. The positives of the disaster were the Moffet Volunteer Fire Department was formed, (and that is a very good thing,) and we had several new acres of cleared land. NO houses or building were destroyed and nor neighboring forests were touched. Dad still claims he had it under control until the rake handle broke, but my brother Bob still remembers the flames going from tree top to tree top. This is something I have experienced as well. It is scary.

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