All Hell is breaking loose here in Mendocino County… where to begin?
Well for starters, the weather. We had a very wet January, but from the middle of February on, it’s been frightfully dry. Pretty much all Spring, it’s been dry, windy, chilly, and dry.
Last Friday evening, I noticed some interesting clouds; it looked like we were going to have a nice sunset. I wanted to go out and do some photography, but I had to do some chores a couple of miles inland. As the chores dragged on and on, a strange thing happened: distant, and not-so-distant, rumblings of thunder. We don’t get thunderstorms here very often. On the rare occasion it rumbles we usually get lots of rain with it. But this was different. I usually love thunderstorms, but this was scary. Lotsa thunder and lightning, hardly any rain.
I did manage to get out for some tail-end-of-the-sunset photography. Here’s a shot of the Mendocino Presbyterian Church:
Later on the Mendocino Headlands, I shot a series of frames with different exposure and focus values for this composite:
Ah, peace and tranquility on the Mendocino Headlands!
The next day I started to hear reports of the fires from friends whose houses were near fires, from news reports, overheard conversations, etc. More than a hundred fires in Mendocino County alone, with many, many more in nearby counties. Whole towns with (voluntary) evacuations. So few government resources that many of the fires were burning without crews even trying to slow them down. Local fire departments running out of gas money.
But still, the feds are in the area in force, busting pot farmers. Priorities, people!
It’s almost a week later now, and we’ve got 87 active fires in Mendo County (some fires have merged with other fires, few are out). Even here on the coast, with most of our air blowing straight of the ocean, the Sun is an eerie orange color.
The scariest thing is, it’s only June. It may not rain significantly until October.