As a follow-up to my weather and fire posts...
Conditions were just right for the second notable fire of the year. This one was a couple miles east of Hill City, on a mix of public and private land, and it started on Saturday afternoon during the height of our summer-in-April weather.
[It was also confusingly named the Storm Hill Fire, or the Storm Mountain Fire before that. We received several panicked phone calls before the confusion was sorted out. But then, mistaken identity is a thing we do around here.]
Here's a view on Sunday, when they'd gotten the worst of it under control and right after a hit of rain made everything extra-hazy.
192 acres total, cause yet unknown but declared "not natural."
All things considered, this could have ended much differently, and for that matter much worse. It was fueled in large part by a lot of pine-beetle-damaged trees; that hill and several surrounding ones are among some of the earliest damage in the Hills and as such the dead trees were particularly dry and ready to light. There are a lot of homes and businesses in the area (I was taking that from the Miner Brewing parking lot) and the potential for lives lost and structural damage was enormous. Just for fun, it's also just off a main highway.
Really. Could have been much worse. Big-time thanks to the fire crews for getting it under control as fast as they did.
It seems only natural that now we're under a winter storm warning.
Maybe that counts as balance?