With a prediction for possible rain later today and/or tomorrow, I'm sure the firefighters are extremely happy and relieved to see this weather. As I write this, it's beginning to rain. Isn't that wonderful!!
I was going to write a post yesterday with photos of the fire and our surrounding area from the day before, but I was just exhausted from thinking about the fire and our situation, breathing the smoky and ash-filled air, and packing/unpacking (for evacuation) our cars. I just needed a day off.
It was also my husband's birthday yesterday so we got in the car and drove up to the Ventura Harbor for fish/shrimp & chips, an ice-cream cone, and some fresh air! We took a short walk around the harbor and then just sat and watched the activity on the water - it was very refreshing.
The following photos were taken on Friday, 5/3/13, as we drove around our community.
A closer view of that big "plume" of smoke as we drive towards Lynn Road from the community center.
The photo above and the following photos were taken from a street that intersects Potrero Road. This is just as the fire is beginning to burn into the Hidden Valley area. Hidden Valley is home to the Lake Sherwood Country Club and many exclusive and very expensive estates/ranches. A lot of celebrities live in the area.
These flames were estimated to be 150 feet high. Can you imagine being on the other side of that hill and knowing that these flames are burning towards your home?
This is the entrance to the Point Mugu State Park - Sycamore Canyon area on Lynn Road heading north. The hills have been completely burned.
This is back in our neighborhood and about 3 blocks from my house. The fire came right up to the back fence of this home.
This is looking towards Sycamore Canyon - Boney Mountain area from our backyard.
The two photos above and the one below are taken on Borchard Road, which is the main entry into Dos Vientos. It wasn't re-opened until late Friday evening since the center divider, which is/was built of railroad ties along with some landscaping and trees which were all burned, was still burning earlier in the day.
On Borchard Road looking to the other side of the street. That's Boney Mountain in the distance and you can see the sheer size of the fire area. At this point, we couldn't see flames any longer in this area, but they were still visible in Hidden Valley.
In today's paper (5/5/13) there are some pretty interesting facts regarding the fire as of late yesterday (5/4/13) afternoon:
28,000 acres burned
56% contained - they expect full containment by Monday if the cooler weather persists
5,000 residents evacuated - all mandatory evacuation orders have been lifted
not one single home destroyed
247 fire engines & 2000 firefighters (firefighters and additional ground personnel deployed from all over the state and from Oregon, Arizona, Idaho and New Mexico)
Total cost $4.5 million and rising
I cannot say enough about the firefighters who valiantly fought this fire and saved property, livestock, and probably lives. Until you've seen first-hand just what they do, it's impossible to comprehend the extent to which they go to protect property/lives while extinguishing fire(s). They are incredibly brave and exceptionally talented.
And, though it's not often said, the wives, husbands, and families of these men/women deserve our thanks also. It takes a special kind of person to be behind the scenes, worrying about the safety of their loved one and not knowing when he/she will be coming home.
I would also like to say Thank You to all of you who expressed concern for my husband and I and to those of you that sent me a personal email. It meant so much to me.