Yesterday we had some very unseasonably warm weather. Very.
At 8:00am it was 38*F. At 2:30pm it was 94*F. Yowsah!
It was a very dry heat.
And there was a LOT of wind.
Know what that means?
Very extreme fire hazard. That's what it means.
And we found out all about that fire hazard last night.
On our way to church we spied a cloud of smoke to the east and all I didn't know was where the fire had originated. A fire had started just east of L'Anse and quickly spread with the wind gusting up to 50-60mph.
Mike was on the golf course and I gave him a call to see what he knew. All he knew was that the fire was a big 'un and he wasn't responding to any calls til his 18 holes were played. (Ninny!) Baraga was called to assist L'Anse around 6:30pm and the kids watched as the fire engines raced past the church. Pelkie Fire Department was put on standby later that evening (Mike was finished with his golf and ready to respond--finally!) but they were never called out.
Now, the news last night was that certain residents (one lady from our church included) were asked to evacuate just in case, but as we left L'Anse at 9:00pm we could see that it was mostly under control.
The info I heard from our local gossip is that it was sparked off by someone welding. I'm sure Mike will get the whole scoop today and I will pass it on.
That's the closest I've ever been to a forest fire and I hope it stays that way. I was really nervous yesterday....we live in the middle of the woods (literally surrounded on all sides by trees--lots of deadfall) and when I was going to get the kids from the bus I got spooked by the smoke from my neighbor's wood furnace. It was more than normal and I did notice that their chimney needs repair. You notice these things when the danger is so high. Normally, I'd just be irritated with the heavy smoke blowing into our yard. *cough*
Here is the report as of 5/21/09 on the Pinery Lake Fire in L'Anse.
Go here to see pictures of the Pinery Lake Fire.
There was also a fire in the Ishpeming area Wednesday. Go here to see pictures and get reports on the Black River Falls Fire.