We are in a dangerous situation in Colorado. At least 9 wildfires rage throughout the state. Many of our beautiful wilderness areas are burning. Fires have destroyed homes and businesses and have caused the evacuation of thousands of residents from one of the major cities, Colorado Springs.
Insufficient moisture started this past winter with low snowpack. Spring was very dry with little rain. Forests already have a great deal of dead-wood from beetle-killed lodgepole pines. The understory is like tinder ready to ignite. Some of our fires started from lightning strikes and others were set by humans either purposely or by carelessness.
Here in Summit County where I live, we have no fires burning at present. However, we are surrounded by wilderness which seems ready to ignite. We watch the skies for storm clouds which might bring needed rain but also dreaded lightning. We hear the news and see the video coverage of devastation in other areas.
My husband and I go about our days normally. We are ready if we must evacuate, but meanwhile there is nothing we can do but live our lives. We realize others are not so lucky and are suffering. I cannot imagine the destruction of the wilderness I love, but I see that it is happening all over our state.
As the sun sets on another day, I'm grateful for the beauty all around me. I give thanks for the men and women who are working hard on the front lines of the fires, trying to save habitat and homes. I hope for rain to wet the mountains and the forests and the grasslands. Meanwhile, we watch and wait.