If a FIRE burns a couple of hundred square miles of range land and it is not reported on national news, does it matter? Even if it is the biggest wildfire burning in the nation?
Well, maybe some national news picked it up, but I didn’t see it. If those flames were torching mansions and tennis courts the world would hear about it. But families of antelope, rabbits and varmints are not newsworthy. And I guess the acres and acres of farm crops that would be toast except they are too green to burn are not as important as golf courses and lah-te-dah estates. But just as well. If people seeking uncrowded places, with clean water and air knew about this part of the world they would promptly crowd it and fill it with pollution.
The wind had been blowing around 30 mph gusting up to 50 mph for two days earlier this week.
Tuesday afternoon I looked up from my desk and saw the sky was filled with really weird clouds. I stepped out on the porch and took some photographs--
of smoke rolling across the sky.
Within minutes the sun was darkened and finally blotted out.
Wind was bending the trees and carrying the smoldering clouds in from a fire blazing across the wide open grassland of the Idaho National Laboratory reserve 30 miles west of here.
Around 300 firefighters using fire engines, a helicopter, bulldozers and air tankers went to work on the blaze.
Even now on Thursday the fight goes on, although the smoke around here has cleared. On my walk home I saw a car full of fellows dressed in range fire fighting gear looking worn and grimy coming out of Taco Bell. They climbed in their car and drove west.
No one is saying what caused the fire. Whoever gets blamed will be in deep crap for a long expensive time. Maybe the scandal will make national news…or not.
Satellite view of the plume of smoke. It flows from the middle of Southeast Idaho and up into
Wyoming and . Montana