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BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?

katlaughing 26 Oct 03 - 06:59 PM
SINSULL 26 Oct 03 - 07:18 PM
katlaughing 26 Oct 03 - 07:26 PM
Joybell 26 Oct 03 - 07:29 PM
Ebbie 26 Oct 03 - 08:28 PM
Bev and Jerry 26 Oct 03 - 09:29 PM
Melani 26 Oct 03 - 09:35 PM
Dave Swan 26 Oct 03 - 09:56 PM
Rapparee 26 Oct 03 - 10:24 PM
katlaughing 26 Oct 03 - 11:37 PM
Amos 27 Oct 03 - 12:14 AM
Amos 27 Oct 03 - 01:27 AM
Roger the Skiffler 27 Oct 03 - 03:43 AM
Joybell 27 Oct 03 - 05:53 AM
Deckman 27 Oct 03 - 09:06 AM
Amos 27 Oct 03 - 09:12 AM
bet 27 Oct 03 - 09:39 AM
Amos 27 Oct 03 - 09:56 AM
Stilly River Sage 27 Oct 03 - 10:22 AM
GUEST,LynnT 27 Oct 03 - 10:52 AM
SINSULL 27 Oct 03 - 11:21 AM
Deckman 27 Oct 03 - 11:24 AM
katlaughing 27 Oct 03 - 11:28 AM
Amos 27 Oct 03 - 11:34 AM
NH Dave 27 Oct 03 - 11:54 AM
Dave Swan 27 Oct 03 - 11:57 AM
Amos 27 Oct 03 - 12:01 PM
Metchosin 27 Oct 03 - 12:16 PM
Bev and Jerry 27 Oct 03 - 12:46 PM
Ebbie 27 Oct 03 - 12:47 PM
katlaughing 27 Oct 03 - 01:42 PM
SeanM 27 Oct 03 - 02:29 PM
wysiwyg 27 Oct 03 - 02:42 PM
NicoleC 27 Oct 03 - 03:47 PM
Metchosin 27 Oct 03 - 04:14 PM
Amos 27 Oct 03 - 04:26 PM
Santa 27 Oct 03 - 05:47 PM
SeanM 27 Oct 03 - 06:01 PM
Amos 27 Oct 03 - 09:24 PM
Joe Offer 27 Oct 03 - 10:17 PM
Susan A-R 27 Oct 03 - 10:50 PM
darkriver 28 Oct 03 - 05:19 AM
Metchosin 28 Oct 03 - 12:25 PM
mg 28 Oct 03 - 03:58 PM
katlaughing 28 Oct 03 - 04:46 PM
SeanM 28 Oct 03 - 06:17 PM
katlaughing 28 Oct 03 - 06:22 PM
Edain 28 Oct 03 - 07:29 PM
Rustic Rebel 28 Oct 03 - 08:56 PM
black walnut 28 Oct 03 - 09:12 PM
katlaughing 28 Oct 03 - 09:27 PM
Amos 29 Oct 03 - 08:33 PM
Joe Offer 29 Oct 03 - 08:55 PM
Bill D 29 Oct 03 - 09:40 PM
katlaughing 29 Oct 03 - 10:14 PM
Dave Swan 29 Oct 03 - 10:21 PM
NicoleC 29 Oct 03 - 10:21 PM
Amos 29 Oct 03 - 10:54 PM
katlaughing 29 Oct 03 - 11:04 PM
Stilly River Sage 29 Oct 03 - 11:18 PM
Amos 29 Oct 03 - 11:20 PM
NicoleC 30 Oct 03 - 12:02 AM
Bev and Jerry 30 Oct 03 - 12:15 AM
Blackcatter 30 Oct 03 - 10:36 AM
open mike 30 Oct 03 - 10:43 AM
Dave Swan 30 Oct 03 - 11:03 AM
NicoleC 30 Oct 03 - 12:44 PM
GUEST,Dave Swan 30 Oct 03 - 05:14 PM
Amos 30 Oct 03 - 06:11 PM
Dave Swan 30 Oct 03 - 10:08 PM
Susan A-R 30 Oct 03 - 10:24 PM
Amos 30 Oct 03 - 10:31 PM
SINSULL 30 Oct 03 - 10:41 PM
katlaughing 31 Oct 03 - 12:52 AM
NicoleC 31 Oct 03 - 01:50 AM
Escamillo 31 Oct 03 - 02:20 AM
Roger the Skiffler 31 Oct 03 - 04:48 AM
open mike 31 Oct 03 - 10:07 PM
Amos 31 Oct 03 - 10:25 PM
artbrooks 31 Oct 03 - 10:44 PM
Amos 01 Nov 03 - 09:19 AM
Joe Offer 01 Nov 03 - 01:51 PM
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Subject: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: katlaughing
Date: 26 Oct 03 - 06:59 PM

Just wondering how you all are doing?


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: SINSULL
Date: 26 Oct 03 - 07:18 PM

Me too. Everyone OK?


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: katlaughing
Date: 26 Oct 03 - 07:26 PM

My neice has a colleague whom she had to help evacuate and her in-laws (my neice's) have been put on alert. She said the highways were just terrible, clogged with folks trying to get out and no one able to get in.

Joe, are you okay up thar in the hills?


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Joybell
Date: 26 Oct 03 - 07:29 PM

Yes me too. Our friends up north in Mendocino County are ok. We called them yesterday.


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Ebbie
Date: 26 Oct 03 - 08:28 PM

My daughter and her family are OK in San Diego county. My son in law said today that their skies are blue (and hot- 90+ degrees) while not many miles away visibility is just about nil. They can't see any smoke or flames so far. He said the Santa Ana is blowing in their neighborhood but it is just breezy instead of blowing hard as it does sometimes. (That Santa Ana is toxic to some people- I remember one year's visit when I thought I had come down with a cold- I had a sore throat and running nose. That was the first time I had experienced the phenomenon.)

One year- I think it was 1994- fires were burning all over in southern California. That year, living in a different house, we could see from the front yard smoke and the flames burning just over the ridge at the Wild Animal Park in San Diego. A major part of the problem with controlling the fires, I think, is the gazillion canyons throughout southern California, which makes for turbulence and instability in the air's movement. It is so scary.


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Bev and Jerry
Date: 26 Oct 03 - 09:29 PM

We are fine for the time being but we're a little nervous as we live in an oak and pine forest. There are no fires anywhere near us at present. Let's keep it that way.

Bev and Jerry


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Melani
Date: 26 Oct 03 - 09:35 PM

We are in the SF Bay Area, far from the current fires.


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Dave Swan
Date: 26 Oct 03 - 09:56 PM

It's blowing like stink around here. Strong offshore breezes are making it tough to fly air drops or recon. The three factors which strongly influence fire behavior (slope, aspect and wind) are in alignment much of the day.

Northern California is down to bare bones protection as we've sent numerous resources to the south. San Diego County is having a particularly tough time as they have sent help next door to San Bernadino and Ventura counties and now can't get resources back over closed roads.

This won't be over anytime soon.

I haven't heard from Amos yet.

Hold a good thought for the residents and the folks trying to win this firefight.

D


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Rapparee
Date: 26 Oct 03 - 10:24 PM

Hopes and wishes are with everyone there! It's not over here yet, either -- the fire danger is still high to extreme, but there's no active burning that I know of.


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: katlaughing
Date: 26 Oct 03 - 11:37 PM

Thanks, Dave. As of Friday night, Amos was okay.

Everyone stay safe!


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Amos
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 12:14 AM

All hands here are okay so far although the area is not yet stabilized as you can tell from the news. We have friends who have been evac'd and others who are hosting scores of evacuees from neighboring communities. We have no immediate danger where we are but until the night is over and we see what the winds are going to do we cannot tell exactly what may transpire. Airport is closed apparently -- we ar e trying to get an update on that.

But the Gaelic Goddess is in excellent hands and we have had a wonderful day in Mexico visiting the renowned Bufadora (blowhole) and seeing life in previously unvisited regions, so we were not part of the general alarums that built up today. This weekend which was supposed to be an escape from stress not only included music and walks on the beach but also included visiting a foreign country and participating in a major county crisis!!

We are readying critical stuff in case there is a shift of wind and we come into the line of fire march but at this time it is not a problem. My instinct is that we will have it beaten back by morning -- I can only hope I am right.

So far so good -- more as we learn it. If my online connection fails I will phone through to Swanno or TGG's Layne to get updates posted.

Hang tough, thanks for the good wishes...

A


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Amos
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 01:27 AM

WINDS ARE DROPPING AND THE HOPE FOR CONTAINMENT IS RISING PROPORTIONATELY.

Sorry -- caps lock key!


A


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Roger the Skiffler
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 03:43 AM

Keeping finger crossed for you, Amos (& other Calif.catters).

RtS


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Joybell
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 05:53 AM

Amos, my first Mudcatter friend , my thoughts are with you and with all of you there. Stay safe all of you.
                                       Joybelle.


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Deckman
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 09:06 AM

Amos ... How close are these fires to Mudlark? Bob


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Amos
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 09:12 AM

Dawn is being treated as threat by the TV media which is really gross. man. It has always been my favorite moment. The "logic" is that the winds will pick up as the sun comes up, of course, and thus re-ignite embers and calmer fires. Right now the stotus is as quo, the winds are down and the fires are in manageable state. The air stinks like a fireplace and eyeballs itch as if you had just spent the day in LA.   The TV stations are forced to resort to replays of the traumas and fears of yesterday. The reporters were very brave all night long.

Everyone here is fine. (I mean our place in the western University City neighborhood, not the county.) Out to the east and north, hundreds of houses have been taken out by flames, and a reported 13 lives have been lost, two of them in a gruesome race through the flames which the driver thought he could win but could not. No count on the losses of horses, other pets, livestock. Thousands have been burned, injured or exhasuted thorugh the fight which is still going on, but looks much more hopeful.

If we stay lucky our undermanned, underpaid and under-equipped heros will pull off a win out of the ashes of the last two days. .

Those ashes are everywhere in the county -- cars are painted with them and lawns are tinted with gray from them. The stink of the fire is the odor of the moment, and it permeates the whole region, bringing back memories of every fire ever visited upon you. I expect the smell will be around for weeks.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: bet
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 09:39 AM

Family is o.k. out there. Still have ashes falling into their yard. It doesn't sound like any will be able to go to work today.

Hope everyone one of you out there is safe. bet


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Amos
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 09:56 AM

Bob:

Mudlark's up near San Luis Obispo, a couple of hundred miles to the north, and not impacted by these fires -- different region altogether. However, I don't know about the local scene up there and the whole state is dry as hell.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 10:22 AM

Remember the Okanogan this summer--until those fires are contained, there's no telling what they might do. Good luck, all!

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: GUEST,LynnT
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 10:52 AM

My mother was evacuated from Alpine CA yesterday afternoon; the big mountain a mile away was already blazing and she got out with a few photos, some documents and a family quilt. Her answering machine was not picking up as of this morning, which means that either the power is off or the house is gone.

My kid brother was ordered out of La Jolla at about the same time; haven't heard from him yet.


LynnT


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: SINSULL
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 11:21 AM

Still no word from Joe?


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Deckman
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 11:24 AM

Sins ... I might be wrong, but I think Joe lives several hundred miles
to the North. Bob


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: katlaughing
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 11:28 AM

I think you're right, Bob, I wasn't thinking when I asked about him earlier. Still, I'd like to hear from him, anyway.:-)He's looking very handsome these days!(See Max's Getaway pix, esp. the Joe Offer "lounging" about one!)


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Amos
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 11:34 AM

Lynn:

I don't think any evacs from La Jolla have been called -- it is just west of where we are -- the furthest salient of the fire line stops east of I-805 except for a very short period yesterday afternoon. Sorry to hear about your mother -- the county os organizing centers for evacuated people all over the place so she'll be taken care of.

Hanging tough. We believe the airport is operating normally and soe of the freeways are opened again where they had been closed.   But there is still a potential for significant danger depending on winds.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: NH Dave
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 11:54 AM

For those interested the Los Angeles Times, http://www.latimes.com/ , has good coverage including maps of the major fires in the area. So far there seems to be three major fires, one is 20-30 miles NW of LA, centered around Simi Valley; the second is north and west of San Bernardino; and the third is down near San Diego. No causes were given for the Simi Valley fire, arson is suspected in the San Bernardino fire, and artillery or small arms fire is suspected in the San Diego fire - a large Marine Corps training base is located near San Diego. There are a few spot fires south and east of San Bernardino, in Riverside County.

   Much of the problems stem from the fact that California has lots of thickly forested land around major cities, so one rarely has to trqavel more than a few miles from most cities to be in a forested area; and the habits of people who can afford it, building homes or vacation homes in the forested areas surrounding the cities. These locations are difficult to protect from wildfires.

   Dave


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Dave Swan
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 11:57 AM

Joe lives far north of the current fires in an area not under threat.
D


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Amos
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 12:01 PM

San Diego is currently experiencing several major fires, some of which have modulated. The fire that was started by alive-fire training exercise at Camp Pendleton is one. The biggest one was started by a lost hiker or hunter lighting a signal fire. A third one is angling south around the Otay Mesa region.

Camp Pendleton, the training camp mentioned above, is part of San DIego county, but outside the city.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Metchosin
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 12:16 PM

So sorry to hear of the loss of life. The summer here was nerve-wracking, so we can empathize and wish there was some way to send some of the rain that finally arrived here, south. Stay safe people and get the hell out of the area if your not officially a firefighter, life's worth more than stuff.

Hope you hear from your family members soon Lynn.


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Bev and Jerry
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 12:46 PM

Mudcat is near us and is in no danger at present. Her surgery went well and she's in a convalescent hospital. We expect her home day after tomorrow but she'll be confined there for about a month.

Bev and Jerry


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Ebbie
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 12:47 PM

My daughter just called and gave me an update which amounts to: We don't have much information. They live in Escondido in north county and she feels it's fairly low in priority for news. Sometimes they are told they are at risk, other times the authorities seem rather cavalier in their responses to the city's questions.

The Santa Ana has not yet increased in velocity this morning- it's at 3 - 5 miles per hour, which is basically just air movement, imo. But they can now see the glow of fires off in the distance and their breathing air has become smokey. Straight up, the sky is still bright blue. They haven't had any rain since May and things are tinder dry. Their house has a fire retardant roof but some of the houses next door do not.

Her husband said that last night he slept in snatches of 20 minute segments; my daughter slept like a log, glad to turn the responsibility over to him.

Schools in the area are closed but my daughter homeschools and there are some important subjects coming up, so, much to the kids' chagrin they are studying today.


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: katlaughing
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 01:42 PM

An excerpt from an email just received from my neice: We've lost 200,000 acres, ~200 houses and 8 people confirmed so far from a fire that started yesterday at 7:45am. The radio just announced that the fire just jumped another freeway.. I'm only in for few minutes, as (her empoyer in San Diego) honored the mayor's request that all nonessential businesses remain closed to conserve on electricity and water and try to keep people off the highways so emergency vehicles can get through.

There was more, scary stuff. Please be safe, everyone. I hope Beccy is far away from all of this with her newborn and other three boys.

kat


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: SeanM
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 02:29 PM

I'm within walking distance of two of the bigger ones - I'm currently watching the Simi Valley/Chatsworth fire out the window at work as it is trying to cross the ridge of the hills half a mile away (our boss's house is currently "at high risk", she's been evacuated since last night), and I'm involved twice with the San Bernardino fire - I live at one end (in the ash trail - we've had the house buttoned up and STILL need to mop so bad it hurts)... they've had a command center set up at the In-n-Out around the corner from us, but from everything we've seen/heard/smelt, it seems that end is going out.

The other side isn't so rosy either - the faire that provides my band with it's stage for our biggest gig is in "evacuated" country, and from what I've seen the fire's nicely squeezing that area at the moment. With the other major faire in CA that the company that owns 'my' event runs closing this season, this would NOT be good news...

M


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: wysiwyg
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 02:42 PM

Hey, if it's any help, please know I am sending all my worry and fantic fretting from here!

Well, really, trying NOT to.... trying to pray, except there are all these fruitbats flying at my head!

~S~


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: NicoleC
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 03:47 PM

Down in Orange County, we're not in danger but squeezed in between all these fires and the ash and smoke is pretty bad. It got really nasty Saturday night -- it was SO smokey I thought another fire might have been set in the Anaheim Hills. I think it was the Camp Pendleton fire blowing smoke, though. A long way away, but the Santa Ana winds were blowing from the south at about 35 mph.

All day Saturday was like perpetual dawn -- red sun and low light. Yesterday I had the house closed up and the air was still pretty bad inside. Today, the air inside is okay and the winds have died down enough that the ash isn't falling like snow anymore. You can smell the fires outdoors, but the smoke is more like a haze. I have an inch of ash in my back yard.

My sinus are going haywire and my throat hurts awful, but I'm still not sure if it's the big dose of ash I got on Friday and Saturday, or a little cold. In the fish pond, my fish are gasping for air and there's not much I can do except change some water each day and try and keep the filter unclogged enough to keep their waterfall (source of air) going.

Fortunately, I should be in no danger here. It seems like it's just around the corner, though! We really need rain, but it doesn't look like we are going to get it, and the firefighters must be exhausted by now. CA fighters often go other places -- I now some offers of help have been made from out of state, but I don't think any other help has made it yet.


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Metchosin
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 04:14 PM

Fire fighting services in BC have just been contacted to stand by and be prepared to send in aircraft and pilots. Maybe we can't send rain, but our guys have certainly earned their stipes this year and should serve you well. Good luck.


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Amos
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 04:26 PM

We just got the Gaelic Goddess off safely on a flight out of ashville to Dallas. She was thoroughly satisfied with her adventuresome weekend which included an elegant dinner amongst crazed artists, an evening or two of making music and swapping songs, a day gallivanting among beaches and tide-pools and a wonderful visit to the Zoo, and a hair-raising gallop amongst the madhouse motorists of Baja California and a tour thorugh several towns of northern Mexico, not to mention the thrill of breathing soot and ash for a night and wondering whether your whole group was going to be evacuated by flame and fire.

So she is well and happy, and will be landing in Dallas in a couple of hours and sends her regards to MCatters all.

The fires here in San Diego county seem to have stabilized but are not over by a good deal. The media spend so much time rerunning the worst bits of the last couple of days that it is hard to learn what the cirrent state of affairs is. But the crisis seems to be declining.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Santa
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 05:47 PM

Now heard from Edain who spent the worst in Seattle but has returned to SD, so clearly no fire would dare approach La Jolla now. Thanks Amos for the reports.


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: SeanM
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 06:01 PM

Update from the Chatsworth fire...

I've been at work, getting a treat watching the battle for the hill top, I guess. Until about half an hour ago, we could watch the drops trying to fight the line atop the ridge. Now, the wind's shifted and completely obscured the entire hill - it looks like it's shifted to blow down, which is NOT good for the hillside in question.

Don't see as many aircraft either. But the wind's picked up pretty heavily, and I'd imagine they'd rather not crash.

The fire over at my home apparently is mostly going around where we're at. That's good news...

M


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Amos
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 09:24 PM

They have just declared Interstate 8, the major freeway to the east from here, open again, meaning they are feeling confident the Dulzura fire is now reduced enough that it won't jump the breaks. So they're allowing cars out on the highway toward Arizona. This is a major plus.

On the negative side there are hundreds of people who are discovering they have lost their houses. But we are winning.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Joe Offer
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 10:17 PM

We've had a busy weekend, so I missed this thread until today. Northern California hasn't had much fire trouble at all this year, but we did have one small fire in August in the American River Canyon, just across Interstate 80 from us - about a mile away. We didn't get any smoke, but the planes flew low over our roof, one after another. Although we were told we weren't in danger, the planes were really frightening - a constant drone, all day long.

We got really worried a couple of years ago when there was fire all around us and we had to breathe smoke for two weeks. The damage was vast, and it destroyed some of our favorite places.

I suppose we're not as fire-safe as we should be. One side of our property is on the Interstate 80 frontage road, and we like the fact that our pines and manzanitas block the sound and sight of the freeway - but the pines form a chain from the road to the house. We just can't bring ouselves to cut down those magnificent trees.

But while all this fire was going in southern California, we took a hike to a lake in the Sierra, about 7,000 feet up. We hadn't driven the road to the trailhead since the fire two years ago - the beginning of the road was absolute devastation, a once-beautiful steeing that is now black and barren. We got past the fire damage, and everything was beautiful by the time we got to the trailhead. The fall colors aren't as vivid as what you see in the Eastern U.S., but they still were wonderful. The lake was ringed with low-growing huckleberry oak, which was red, orange, yellow, and green. We found some huge bear droppings near the lake, but no bears. Lots of hunters, along the road driving to the trail, though. I whistled every few hundred yards, to make sure the bears and the hunters knew we were coming. We didn't run into anybody until we were almost back to our car.

We live in an area of breathtaking beauty, so it's worth the fire risk. I sure hope it rains soon, though.

-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Susan A-R
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 10:50 PM

I wish we could export some of our weather. We are under flood watch (not very serious, just the possibility of streams going over because of rain.) If only we could share.

Thinking of you all. Dave S. glad to hear you are not among those called down to assist. Thought of you a lot today.

Susan


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: darkriver
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 05:19 AM

Just got back from the Long Beach area where I visited my mother.
It was pretty awful to visit--my wife is asthmatic and as someone pointed out already, there was an ashfall Sunday--like living near a volcano. We looked down from our hotel room to the swimming pool just below our window and could see the entire pool covered with ash. The sky (even on the coast) was dirty grey, and the sun was dull orange. Needless to say, we stayed inside with the air conditioning.

Very nice to be back in the San Francisco Bay area with cool, clear air.

For those from other areas, the reason California suffers these fires is a combination of several reasons: drought, yes, but also bark beetle infestations, which have killed literally millions of trees. In addition, there are lots of hills and canyons which create opportunities for fires to rush uphill. Most of these fires occur in October, which in California tends to be very hot, and in Southern California there are the Santa Ana winds--winds up to 60 miles per hour sometimes that come from the east (i.e., from over very dry land). Actually, I guess these winds are in northern California too, as they were in the Oakland firestorm in 1991.

Shutting up now.

doug


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Metchosin
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 12:25 PM

I believe the area around Los Angeles was called "Yang na" meaning Valley of Smoke, even prior to the arrival of the Europeans.


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: mg
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 03:58 PM

could someone explain to me, with all due respect to those in fire danger, why they build out of wood there? I know it is better in earthquakes than some stuff, but isn't reinforced concrete good in earthquakes? To say nothing of fires? When I went to France I was told they can not build out of wood there for fear of fires..it is the law..why isn't it the law in places with extreme heat and not a whole lot of rainfall etc. And why are they built with wood in Hurricane Alley? Can't we prevent some of these losses? Can't the insurance companies say we won't insure new wood construction in certain areas? And wouldn't that save a few trees, which I am not convinced are in entire danger of extinction, but for the sake of argument...and send some money to places that have a lot of sand and/or rock, which often tend to be not too prosperous for that reason....

mg


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: katlaughing
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 04:46 PM

Good question, mary, maybe economics? We watched a fascinating show the other night in which the house was built of "flying concrete." It was such a lightweight substance that the home was qute fanciful with larges swoops of round walls, arched windows and a wonderful shower surround, completely sculpted out of the same material, as were all of the walls, etc. Really interesting stuff!


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: SeanM
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 06:17 PM

Humanity's basically conservative nature? "It was good enough for the last ten times we burned, it's good enough now?"

Some fire based building codes have made it - it's not allowed to wood shingle houses in some areas (thus the billions of identical terra cotta roofed housing developments that have sprung up).

M


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: katlaughing
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 06:22 PM

Found the website with the Flying Concrete houses. Take a look, they are wild, fun, and very interesting.

Thanks, everyone, for reporting in and keeping us up to date on the fires. You are all in our thoughts and we give thanks for your continued safety.

kat


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Edain
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 07:29 PM

It's still really smokey in San Diego. The air is fairly think with smoke and most people who are out and about are wearing face masks. I sat at a bus stop for about 10 minutes earlier and by the time the bus arrived my eyes were stinging and my throat was dry. There no visible 'sky' and it's been almost a perpetual dusk all day with car and street lights on. I took the the two photos below at about noon but unfortantely the camera doesn't give an idea of the orange tinge to everything.
Photo 1
Photo 2


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Rustic Rebel
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 08:56 PM

I'm glad to hear all is well for CA mudcatters. Hope it stays that way for you all. We were almost to the point of fire fear up here in MN until it started snowing yesterday. I am thankful for any moisture no matter the form. I'll send some rain vibes out your way and continue to wish you all safety.
Peace, Rustic


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: black walnut
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 09:12 PM

I heard a Canadian firefighter interviewed on the news today. He said that despite fatigue from the BC fires, they were so eager to go and help out. Firefighters are the most amazing of heros.

A couple of years ago we had smoke and ash drifting into Ontario from Quebec forest fires. I remember the dark, eerie feeling, and the way it affected eyes and breathing. It was the weekend of the Mariposa Folk Festival. I can't imagine how awful it would be to be close to a forest fire for any length of time.

Be safe, folks!

~b.w.


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: katlaughing
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 09:27 PM

Edain, those photos are outstanding...the composition, perspective, etc. Thanks for posting them.


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Amos
Date: 29 Oct 03 - 08:33 PM

Today has been better -- the wind came in from the west for a good while and brought cooling moisture, and this afternoon there was actually some normal blue in the sky.

However the area of Julian was still in desperate battle last I heard. That may have changed later today.

Agree re the photos, Edain.


A


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Joe Offer
Date: 29 Oct 03 - 08:55 PM

Californians may still build wooden houses, but they no longer have wooden roofing. You don't see wood shingles on new houses any more, although there are certain flame-retardant wood shingles that are still legal. All new or replacement roofs in California have to be flame-retardant. Frame houses hold up better in earthquakes. The main concern for fire danger has always been roofing, not walls.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Bill D
Date: 29 Oct 03 - 09:40 PM

the continuing news coverage is so very sad and scary. I'm glad that names I know are 'ok', but I hurt for all those who have lost everything.....and the firefighters who are working for MANY hours without rest are amazing! I think I'd rather deal with hurricanes, thanks...(wish we could send you a mini-hurricane with lots of water for 2-3 hours!)


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: katlaughing
Date: 29 Oct 03 - 10:14 PM

It is very sad to see. One young woman lost her mother who was trying to save their horses. My daughter just called to say a firefighter was lost according to the news she was watching. Did I hear right, they think one of these was arson?


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Dave Swan
Date: 29 Oct 03 - 10:21 PM

Yes, we think it's arson.

I know the fighter who got killed. Used to work with him.

Four folks who work for my department are deployed in San Berdoo now.

It won't be over for a long time.

D


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: NicoleC
Date: 29 Oct 03 - 10:21 PM

More than one, kat. One is definite, but an 'accident' from a fire a hunter set in the woods trying to signal a friend. Another is almost certainly arson. I suspect that when the ash settles we'll find out that most of them are -- any time there are big fires there always seem to be arsonists that suddenly pop up and set more.


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Amos
Date: 29 Oct 03 - 10:54 PM

Sick but true, Nicole. Dave, my condolences. There is no end to the tragedies these incredible fires have caused on the human scale.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: katlaughing
Date: 29 Oct 03 - 11:04 PM

That is so terrible. Dave, my condolences and may your other friends come through safely.

May Light, Love, and Lots of Rain come your way.

kat


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 29 Oct 03 - 11:18 PM

This will give you an idea of what all areas are involved.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Amos
Date: 29 Oct 03 - 11:20 PM

In SD County one of the three fires is now contained.

The two which are not however are galloping. The mountain town of Julian is doing a desperate Alamo-like stand to prevent encroachment on its central zone; the pines on its outskirts are going up like Roman candles.

To the north, the mountain called Palomar, where the Observatory is (and two friends of mine live with their horses), is under assault as we speak -- this is the mountain that looks down on the Pauma Valley near route 78. The Otay fire is the one that is under control.

As mentioned above, one firefighter has lost his life and three have been seriously injured in the Julian battle.

This has been three days of hell for those doing the fighting and those whose property has been lost and loved ones harmed.

There is no threat to the regions where Banjoest is nor the area where Edain is and where I am.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: NicoleC
Date: 30 Oct 03 - 12:02 AM

The forecast is calling for a 40% chance of showers on Friday. Keep your fingers crossed. Even if we get it, it won't be enough to put the fires out but it might give the firefighters a leg up on getting these guys under control.


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Bev and Jerry
Date: 30 Oct 03 - 12:15 AM

Notice in the pictures that all the smoke is blowing towards the ocean. That is caused by the Santa Ana winds. The wind usually blows to the east away from the ocean in Califoria.

We're about 250 miles north and the wind changed direction here Tuesday night or Wednesday morning. On Tuesday we had all the windows open (off shore winds) but on Wednesday we needed heat in the house (on shore winds).

Bev and Jerry


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Blackcatter
Date: 30 Oct 03 - 10:36 AM

I grew up in San Bernardino. Just found out from relatives (who are all safe for the time being) that the house my grandparents moved into in the 1950s when they moved from Brockport, NY, was destroyed by the fire. It was in Devore (which is north of San Bernardino on the way to the Cajon Pass).


As for woden houses - Joe's correct - it's the roofs that are the things that need to be protected. Flying embers ignight them and then the house goes. Non-flammible roofs almost totally elliminate the problem - the only ones that burn in forest fires are those that are in the direct path of a fire. And it doesn't matter what they're built of then - the fire will get inside and burn a concrete block house down from the inside out.

As for wooden houses in "hurricane alley" After 25 years of living in south and central Florida I can tell you that once again, it's the roofs that are the weak point. In a moderate hurricane, stick-built houses typically resist damage, especially if they're built with roofs that are strapped down to the concrete foundation. But if the roof rips off, the house is gone. Doesn't matter if the house is wood or CBS (concrete block structure). I can tell you from first hand experience in the aftermath of Hurricane Andrew in 1992 that hundreds CBS houses were completely destroyed by the tornadoes that Andrew spawned.

stay safe all you Southern Californians . . .


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: open mike
Date: 30 Oct 03 - 10:43 AM

I am working at the local cdf fire station.
one of the two engines from here has been
sent down south. today we sent a fire fighter to
Julian to replace a fellow who was injured.
Blessings to the family and friends and co-
workers of the fellow who fell in the line
of duty. a paramedic, i hear. We had a 1,000
acre fire this morn at 2:30, and our engine
went to a 100 acre fire on sunday. we barely
have enough people to cover here in butte
county as many are in san diego and some
also were sent toredding area this week.
I hope every one stays safe. ok got to go..
Laurel


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Dave Swan
Date: 30 Oct 03 - 11:03 AM

Be safe, Laurel. Stay hydrated and keep that shake and bake where you can find it in a hurry.

D


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: NicoleC
Date: 30 Oct 03 - 12:44 PM

It's a bit drizzly today across LA and quite cool. I guess the planes are grounded but at least the guys on the ground should be getting some good conditions today!


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: GUEST,Dave Swan
Date: 30 Oct 03 - 05:14 PM

I just had an update from friends on the fireline. Their engine company was the one next to Steve Rucker when he was overrun. My friend Shane and his crew were subjected to the same wind change as Rucker and were in a bad way. They had fire all around and were well and truly screwed. As they made preparations to kiss their asses goodbye, a helicopter appeared and dropped its load directly on them. They were knocked to the ground, nearly knocked out, but wet enough to survive.

It's frustrating as hell not to be there to help out. I'm still 300 miles away covering my district. I hope to get on a relief crew and get sent down there soon. They'll need help for a long time.

D


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Amos
Date: 30 Oct 03 - 06:11 PM

Dave:

You know you have a home base if you need one.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Dave Swan
Date: 30 Oct 03 - 10:08 PM

Thanks, pal. If I get down there, I'll throw myself on the mercy of your shower and fridge.

See you soon up here if not there huh?

D


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Susan A-R
Date: 30 Oct 03 - 10:24 PM

It just sounds hair-raising. Ipm prayin' for rain in all the right places. (we've got a few flooded fields we've had so much. What irony.)
Take care all ye west coast folks.


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Amos
Date: 30 Oct 03 - 10:31 PM

Roger that.

At present we have a 100-mile long ridge line where two fires are about 40% contained. The current prognostication is that the winds will swing more from the West and steer the fires away from Julian and Pine Valley.

The areas that have now been extinguished are devastated, homes lying in ash and gutted cars bearing gruesome mute witness. Insurance assessors are moving in emergency vans and issuing first-response checks...we heard one interview with a couple who had been within 57 payments of owning the home that was just reduced to rubble, and under insured on it. It has been a week of tears in San Diego County, and I am glad it is drawing to a close.


A


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: SINSULL
Date: 30 Oct 03 - 10:41 PM

On the news tonight: several of the firefighters at Julian watched their own homes go up in flames while they tried to save someone else's. Some have worked 30 hours straight. Amazing commitment and courage.

2600 homes have burned. It is hard to imagine.

Dave - stay safe. I am about to get Spaw on your case. You are spoiling the reputation of the Layabouts At Large.


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: katlaughing
Date: 31 Oct 03 - 12:52 AM

I second that, Dave, be careful! I am really glad that helicopter showered your friends.

I don't understand it because I saw the satellite photos which showed the winds blowing the smoke out to sea, but on some level it was blowing it this way. We've had smoke all day, obscuring the mountains around our valley. The news said it was from the CA fires!

kat


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: NicoleC
Date: 31 Oct 03 - 01:50 AM

Ditto on that offer, Dave, if you happen to be a bit further north where I might be closer than Amos. Although I would hope that accomodations are provided for the firefighters that are coming from other areas!


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Escamillo
Date: 31 Oct 03 - 02:20 AM

I'm concerned about Californian Mudcatters, families and friends. Stay safe, please.

Un abrazo
Andrés, in Buenos Aires


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Roger the Skiffler
Date: 31 Oct 03 - 04:48 AM

Like the other 'Catters, I was saddened to hear of the death of a firefighter. I can't imagine what it must be like to be in the middle of this. The worst we got even in this drought year was a few heathland fires. Idiot arsonists rarely seem to get caught up in the consequences of their actions. Best wishes to all affected.

RtS
(WE've just had our first real rain for weeks)


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: open mike
Date: 31 Oct 03 - 10:07 PM

Well, after 100 hours of filling in at the fire station,
the snow here today lowered the fire danger and we were
sent home. (though the traffic accident danger level is
high now due to slippery roads)

We were on a strike team assignment a few years back
at a 60,000 acre fire the "Cottonwood" when we read
the instructions on the fire shelters and in spanish
it said Sacudides meaning to shake it out....we promptly
named our groupo the Sacudides Hot Shots...in jest.

Sunday, our engine responded to a 100 acre fire which was
started by a stupid cigarette smoker. one home was destroyed
and many others threatened...i think these costs should be
figured in when determining how much damage the tobacco
companies do!! the millions of dollars which must be spent each
year to suppress road side fires due to cigarettes being
throw out windows must be a huge amount!! I do not know of
and figures on this, but i see it happen very often!!

thanks for the good advice dave, and i hope you stay safe
and succeed in nay efforts you may engage in.


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Amos
Date: 31 Oct 03 - 10:25 PM

Here's to you both, Dave and Open Mike -- stay well, safe and brave.

Gracias, Andres--que lo vaya bien!!

The worst is over and the reconstruction is underway.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: artbrooks
Date: 31 Oct 03 - 10:44 PM

Best of luck to you all. I hope our fire season is over here, but we're looking at a warm winter and dry spring, so next year might be worse than last. We're getting a lot of California's smoke, so it all isn't going out to sea.


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Amos
Date: 01 Nov 03 - 09:19 AM

Hey! It rained!! It rained in the night!! Yaaaaay!!!


A


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Subject: RE: BS: California Mudcatters okay with fires?
From: Joe Offer
Date: 01 Nov 03 - 01:51 PM

Here in Northern California, we had our first storm of the season Thursday and Friday. It closed Interstate 80 all day, and I had to do some back-roads maneuvering yesterday to get around the detour. As Open Mike says, the storm should reduce our fire danger up here. I'm glad we took one last hike in the High Sierra last weekend, before it all got covered with snow. The snow got down to 3,000 feet. We're at 2,300, so all we got was much-needed rain.
It clouded out our chance of seeing Northern Lights, though - darn!
-Joe Offer-


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This Thread Is Closed.


Mudcat time: 21 September 5:56 AM EDT

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