Friday, June 13, 2014

bend burning

On Saturday afternoon (6/7) a wildfire was sparked, turning the Bend skyline black with smoke... 

A little dramatic, I know, but I couldn't resist an epic headline.
[[ my pano from pilot butte: click to enlarge. ]]

Me and Pat were headed to Brasada for the day when we noticed a plume of smoke creeping up to the sky and partially blocking views of the Sisters Mountains. I assumed controlled burn since those are a common occurrence around here, but Pat quickly pointed out that the smoke was turning black. Once we reached his moms place we had a panoramic view of the disaster, which had already grown significantly and included a second plume of smoke. Throughout the day we sat on the porch watching what they named the Two Bulls Fire from a safe distance. As it turns out, there were two fires that sparked about 15 minutes apart, and now local authorities are throwing phrases around like "man made" and "arson".

Things escalated from around 350 acres and the evacuations of all homes and national parks in two areas, to almost 6,200 acres at 0% contained overnight as air support halted for the evening. By Sunday afternoon the fire had grown even larger creeping closer to town, and over 1,000 local residents were placed on evacuation standby. Even though our home is on the other side of Bend, and we personally have only had to deal with some smoke, a little ash, and some seriously compromised air/itchy eyes, the whole situation has been extremely creepy to say the least. Now the fire has reached somewhere around 6,800 acres but firemen have finally gained control of it and seem to be successfully moving it away from town.
Mad props to the fire teams who have been working day and night to get this thing under control. 

Here is a Map of the evacuation zones from the Two Bulls Fire for proximity. 

I took a series of pictures on Saturday at Brasada, and then got a few closer shots from Pilot Butte by our house in town on Sunday. 

[[ progression of the fire saturday afternoon and evening. ]]

[[ progression of the fire sunday morning. driving in to bend. late afternoon shots on pilot butte. ]]

If you want to see exactly what we were looking at from Brasada in "real time", Click Here, scroll down to the bottom, click on "Webcam", and select Saturday 6/7/2014 for a time lapse video of exactly what we saw. The video from Sunday 6/8/2014 is pretty interesting also.

For more "real time" views of the fire, check out the following videos:
Eye On Bend Saturday Timelapse (click here for the condensed version)
One Hour of Smoke Timelapse
Fire at Night Timelapse
Aerial Video from Drone 1
Aerial Video from Drone 2

Additionally, there is a ton of amazing imagery that I pulled off of Instagram (#twobullsfire) below, as well as some pretty epic shots from wedding photographer Josh Newton who was shooting at Rock Springs Ranch when the entire wedding party was forced to evacuate the area. Click here to view his website with more images, and here is the full story (though it has blown up so I'm sure you are all sick of it).

[[ photos from instagram, credit: trappface. stubobusa. american_sf. aurora_cook. ]]
[[ photos from our friends: sara's pic from southwest bend. jenn's pic from north east right by our place. ]]

Finally, here are some news and mapping sources that I have been using to follow the fire's progress for those interested:
CentralORFire (twitter feed)  |  CentralORFire Blog
USGS Two Bulls Fire Map Viewer (zoom in on oregon)
KTVZ (local news)
Wildfire News Today (lots of good info & pictures)
The Oregonian
Live Weather Stations 1 & 2 (although things are nice and clear now)