Dancing for Rain! A Colorado Wildfire Photo Essay

My husband Danny and I escaped from the scorching temperatures in Boulder, Colorado and drove to the mountains. The temperatures at 2 miles high still reached the high 80’s! This time of year the wildflowers bloom, but it has been too dry. I need to start doing a rain dance.

We stopped at a car show in Vail. Some of the colors reminded me of Popsicles. Which color Lamborghini would you choose?

 A Lamborghini traffic jam.


 

I kinda like the white one!

Most buildings don’t have air conditioning and have to circulate air the old-fashioned way.

Pretty quiet in Vail for a Saturday.

Not too much was happening so we traveled to the tiny mountain town of Minturn. The people were very friendly and Danny pointed out a great “rest stop,” but we forged ahead.

We stopped at Redcliff which can only be entered by a narrow mountain pass. The sleepy town had a few wonderful photo opportunities.

“His” and “hers” snowmobiles. Check out the recycled fence!

The Pit Bull behind the ski fence didn’t seem so friendly.

I had to pull over to take some shots of the trout stream. You can see the devastating effects of beetle kill.

These were lodgepole pines. The beetles have left the other varieties alone, so far.

Around each corner was another grand vista.

As we continued our day trip, we noticed smoke ahead.

We worried that the fire was in Leadville

We were somewhat relieved to see it was in an underpopulated area on Highway 91.

Trees went up in flames like torches.

We said a prayer for the families being evacuated and fire fighters risking their lives.

The helicopter carrying the small red pail full of water seemed so useless against the spreading wildfire. We stood helpless with several others on the side of the road. Although this fire was in its very early stages, we could see how treacherous fighting these types of fires can be.

When we arrived back in Breckenridge, we pulled out a chess set and sat on the deck. Ash began falling from the sky.

Later we found out that 5 new fires broke out in the State of Colorado on Saturday. The one that we witnessed is called the Treasure Fire and has burned 320 acres. A fire outside of Estes Park has already consumed 22 houses and has grown to 6000 acres. By Monday it was 100% contained. Whew! While another blaze started at the Garden of the Gods (a rock formation), outside of Colorado Springs. It has been almost three weeks since the High Park fire started. It has burned over 83,000 acres, destroyed 248 homes and is 45% contained. We haven’t begun the dry month of July and our State is on fire, burning over 109,000 acres.

Ash-filled clouds

We could use a soaking rain. A few drops pattered on our car’s windshield while driving down the mountain. I mentioned my idea of rain dancing and hoped the Wiccans and Native Americans in the area were out there in full force! They have danced for rain during  past droughts.

While sitting down outside on our deck for a late supper, the wind kicked up. I walked to the front of the house and saw a massive thunderstorm raging over the wildfires in Estes Park and beyond in Fort Collins. Maybe they are dancing!

I am neither Wiccan nor Native American, but am going to keep on rain dancing! It can’t hurt.

“Oh really?” Roxy thinks, “It hurts just to watch you.”

How does she get in every one of my dances?


At 2:10 into this video there is a short and very old authentic clip of a Sioux tribe rain dancing. It is worth watching! I think those are old Ford automobiles in the background.


How to do a rain dance.

Will you be taking any road trips this summer? Do you have fire restrictions in your area?

This is the worst year on record for Colorado wildfires. Please keep the victims and firefighters in your thoughts and prayers.

Related articles: http://www.aspentimes.com/article/20120625/NEWS/120629917/1077&ParentProfile=1058

http://www.reporterherald.com/news/high-park-fire/ci_20933219/high-park-fire-more-residents-may-go-home

https://twitter.com/markLeads/status/217312127864676353/photo/1

UPDATE!

A fire broke out in the foothills around 2:00 this afternoon and is threatening the city of Boulder. There are 1000 people on pre-evacuation alert and my daughter Courtney packed her car and is moving home.

 The “Flagstaff Fire” is being fanned by high winds.

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