If you've watched the news or turned on a computer this week, you may have seen coverage of the worst wildfire in Larimer County, CO in the last 25 years... and one of the top three worst wildfires ever in CO.
My brother lives in Larimer County.
Last time we mapped the boundaries of the fire, his home was located 4.4 miles from the edge of the flames.
He has texted me these pictures - taken from his street - over the last 24 hours as the fire, which was caused by lightning Saturday, has rapidly grown to over 41,000 acres.
This is the view from the edge of his neighborhood:
Taken Monday evening just a few blocks away - when the winds shifted and gave them a break from the smoke for awhile.
They have since shifted back.
Would you pray for rain for CO? Would you pray for the 600+ firefighters from all over the US & Canada who have responded to the plea for help?
This is a category 1 fire - extremely dangerous and out of control. The Larimer County Sheriff has said it is his "worst nightmare." He was in tears on national news last night as he said it has been so "tough"
Today, firefighters have managed to get it partially under control - now 5% contained.
Where my brother lives, smoke is a major problem. I spoke to him this morning and his voice was raspy. He said the dogs are lethargic and coughing. He tried to go outside today to take pictures but the smoke was so thick he couldn't see anything. His ac is off to try to prevent more smoke from coming in so he sits in a hot, stuffy home glued to the news as he watches and grieves so many areas he loves to spend time in going up in flames.
R and I keep talking about our first home - how heartbreaking it would be to know it had likely been destroyed by fire. We talk about places we have loved in various cities we have lived in - places we have invested our time or money into and how sad we would be to know they had burned.
And we talk about what we would grab - if we were given notice to evacuate - what would we take with us with limited space? What really matters?
He happened to have a uhaul with him from his trip to TX last weekend (pics below) so thankfully, he has been able to fill that with stuff. Many areas have been evacuated already - including his former home - his car is loaded and sits ready should he be told to evacuate. For now, he waits and watches.
And we sit helpless to do anything to help - helpless to help pack as they determine what to save and what can be replaced. (He has commented several times how little all the "stuff" seems to matter now.)
So we pray for rain and for containment and for safety.
Already, 100 structures gone and one life lost.
And thousands of beautiful acres destroyed.
photo above sourced from here
Last weekend, my little brother came to town. He was completing up a several weeks long tour with his band, Mosey West. (hence, the u-haul full of music equipment.)
Our cousins decided at the last minute to make the trip from MO to see him play.
So fun to see you, Clingans!!
We spent lots of time with Aunt GAC & Uncle GUS & Cassidy & Kyle and Uncle Adam & "the band" swimming
and learning new tricks!
Saturday night, we went to a new restaurant with friends to hear Mosey West.
(Excuse the phone pic)
The view was incredible - we sat on the patio and looked at rolling hills with stone fences and this fountain:
I felt like I was on vacation!
my mom & brother and I
Several of our friends joined us and we had a great time being with them while listening to the band
Go here to read what the critics are saying about Mosey West.
Their music is available on itunes.
It's been described as alt country or sonic folk style
I'm so proud of my brother - his band has really taken off and won multiple awards! It's so fun to watch him be successful at something he loves.
And we loved listening to him!
(Saturday, he got a message that there was a fire near his city but it seemed small and far away at that time...
by Sunday afternoon, he learned it was 0% contained & was rapidly growing...
he and the band drove through the night Sunday night - over 16 hours...
drinking cokes to stay awake and driving on adrenaline and fear for their town, their friends, and their homes.
By the time he arrived at his door Monday morning, the fire had doubled in size to over 30,000 acres.
He described driving in as armegeddon.
Our hearts are heavy for CO & NM as they battle these horrific fires.