("I saw the smoke ascending, it seemed to reach the sky/
.. till all my strength had left me, and all my courage too" are lines from Texas Rangers, performed by Tex Ritter among others, lyrics have been attributed to Richard Shindell or . Though in the case of wild fires, the conclusion "you'd better stay at home" will only help if your home is someplace green and humid, far away. Wild fires and the extreme weather that's increased their ferocity in recent years are far more implacable than the fiercest warrior; wars are avoidable, but even if we gave up all our combustion-driven toys and spark-producing tools, we'd still be facing lightning-lit fires across these Western landscapes in dry summer weather.)
|Smoke column with lenticular cloud|
This is looking south from the parking lot at the grocery store. I ran into our current fire chief, and he said he thought those kinds of clouds only formed way high up in the atmosphere - meaning this smoke column is getting really tall.
|Smoke column with drift smoke|
(Of course, fire fighters would much rather get a false alert than sit on our hands while you wait for the fire to get big enough to be sure.... but it would be even better for everyone if we had some nice, gentle rain to wash the smoke out of the sky, leaving us a clear field of view and better chances of controlling any remaining fires.)
While all this is going on, our little rural fire department is sending a truck or two to help with the efforts on the big fires. I'm babysitting Karen's goats, while she's off running with the fire crews. Lots of goat milk! Lots of curious noses!