Friday, July 20, 2007

The West is Burning

Fires, started by lightning in many cases and man in others, are burning all over the west. Idaho in particular is hard hit and a large brush fire is burning on the Arco desert near here. A lot of the fire is within the boundaries of the Idaho National Laboratory, a nuclear research facility along the lines of Lawrence Livermoore in Berkley and Los Alamos in New Mexico, although at last report none of the facilities or buildings at INL were in danger. One small community of about 50 people was in danger of being cut-off by fire last night but I haven't heard anything today. High temperatures coupled with low humidity and a lack of rainfall have caused the government to raise fire danger warnings to the highest level.

This hot, dry weather is great for riding but you need to be damn careful when you camp and stop to rest. Also, dehydration can be a problem and you need to carry and drink plenty of water. I usually freeze a quart bottle of water and toss it into the saddle bag as I leave. It melts gradually and stays cold for a few hours.

A wild fire swept through a canyon in South Dakota's Black Hills destroying a number of homes. With Sturgis only a little more than two weeks away this could be a concern for all headed that way.
More on the fires from New West

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