These are random musings of my life journey, the people, animals, places, and events which have woven, and continue to weave, a tapestry that is me. We all know there is no real destination, only the ongoing experiences which blend together, creating the trail. Each step gives a glimpse of what is to come, without allowing me to see the end result. It is exciting. I have a home base that is mine, that gives me a place to rest. This is it. This is where my heart is, no matter where I journey...................

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

After the fire

After being at work for about 6 hours, I began to have significant problems with congestion. I'm assuming it was the smoke in the air, although I couldn't smell it, that was aggravating my allergies. I got to the point of being able to breathe through my nose at all. I'm glad I'm as far as I am from it here at home.

The fire is now 20% contained. (Note: On the 10:00 news, they just said it is now 35% contained. That's good! Let's hope the high winds forecast for tomorrow don't reverse that.) It has burned over 10,000 acres. That's not huge compared to some others, but in these photos, you're seeing just a smidgen of the damage, and yet it is breathtaking. I can't fathom the fires that take hundreds times over this much!

You can and should click on them to enlarge them to see the details.

In all these photos, I'm standing on the shoulder of  various spots along US Highway 70. I had driven out to a feed store east of town to get some dog food, and I was amazed at the sight. The realization of just how close it was to the highway and the narrow area that holds some homes along the highway was sobering. You will notice the ridges closest to the camera are, fortunately, unscathed. The scorched ground is literally an easy couple minutes walk from the highway.

This is the area that burned to the east of Ruidoso. Many people who lived in back of where I stood to take this photo were evacuated. The highway, US 70, is directly behind me, and the fear was that the fire was so big that could have jumped the pavement.

Obviously there are still little pockets that are bursting out even though it appears there is nothing else to burn. In all these photos, you can and should click on them to enlarge them to see the details.

Look at this. I left the fence in the frame so you could see the perspective of distance.

I just suck in my breath every time I look at this.

Lonely barren skeletons of trees along the ridge. So sad.

Again, a look at the close ridge that had little/no damage and the destroyed ridges behind.


So sad.

Another of those pop-up fires.

Closer view. I can't imagine what is left there to burn, but it burns on.

This is the race track and casino. It would probably have burned if not for the huge parking lot between it and the fire. You can see that much of the ridge directly behind it burned.

I'm standing in the Walmart parking lot. People standing here on Sunday had astounding pictures of flames shooting up 30-40 feet into the air.

Again fro the WallyWorld parking lot

One last little rebel fire that refuses to turn loose.

Most of the burned and burning areas are out of sight now, but it is still burning.  I can't tell you the feeling one gets looking at this. I keep reminding myself that this in nature's way of restoring health to the forest. This actually thins the old wood and allows new growth. Sadly, it takes decades to come back. I visited another fire site near here a couple years ago. It burned about ten years ago, and it is just now showing regrowth. In another 20 years, it will begin to look like a forest again. I will be long gone from this world when this newest damage will be forgotten.

One of the places where I stopped was a news van from one of the Albuquerque Stations.  They were shooting this video while I was taking a couple shots:

What else can one say? I know I have nothing more I can conjure up.  Later, all.


  1. It reminds us our stay on this earth is just a small part of the cycle.

  2. Sadly, this doesn't surprise me at all Lyn. And this is a part of New Mexico that we did not see. Around Demings it is so very dry that I fear this same thing could happen any instant! And the winds are so constant and strong in the recent days that if a spark is allowed to fall to the ground this is what will happen in so many places!

    The Rocky Mountain areas are going to be vulnerable also because of the pine beetle having killed so many trees and now it's been so dry. I fear this summer will be bad for forest fires.

  3. Merikay, very true.

    MM, yes, this is a very sensitive ecosystem. Are you still in Deming? This morning they were showing single digit humidity over many places in the state. We haven't had it this dry in quite a while.

    Everyone, please do a rain dance. Not a thunderstorm dance (we don't need lightning!!), just RAIN!

  4. I just hate seeing all of those dead trees. Forest fires do so much damage and like you said Lyn, takes decades to replace. I hope these trees come back soon enough for you to enjoy this view again. We are terribly dry down here in Deming and worried about possible fires.

  5. So I gather your office still stands, just reeks of afterburn. I remember that for quite some time after my neighbor's house caught fire. Terrible smell.

    Our favorite Sirius channel is "The Bridge." Bob Dylan, Cat Stevens, Billy Joel, etc.

    Enjoyed your pictures. Too bad you couldn't partner with your astromoner neighbor and get some out of this world pix.

  6. The Circle of Life often feels sad. You will rejoice when you see the first signs of green cropping up....bits of grass or wild-flowers. There will be beauty again, even before it is a full forest. Thank you for sharing your photos.

  7. Moni, it is so dry everywhere in this area. It is going to take a lot to recover.

    Dave, the office is fine. There doesn't seem to be any smell in the buildings. They turned the fire around rather quickly as far as the town was concerned, fortunately. Whew!

    Dakota, yes, it is. I know you understand from your own life experiences just how tough it feels at times.

    Linda, yes, it certainly was. I'm glad it is over. 95% contained now.


If you have something to say about it, just stick out your thumb, and I'll slow down so you can hop aboard! But hang on, 'cause I'm movin' on down the road!!! No time to waste!!!