The Station Fire

The Angeles National Forest is located in the San Gabriel Mountains north of L.A.  Arsonists started The Station Fire in the Angeles National Forest three days after we had gone hiking in the San Gabriel Mountains for the first time.  We had just moved to L.A., so hiking in the mountains was a welcome diversion from unpacking the mountain of boxes in our flat.  We enjoyed exploring a trail that led to the Vetter Mountain Fire Lookout.  The 75-year-old Lookout burned to the ground less than a week after our hike.  It became impossible for us to look at the San Gabriel Mountains without feeling a sense of loss after the fire destroyed over 160,000 acres of terrain.

A week after our hike, I was on the roof of our building in downtown L.A. when I saw a huge plume of smoke rise from the San Gabriel Mountains.  Although I was busy painting shelves (which I later installed in our kitchen), I ran downstairs between coats to grab my camera.  I took several photos of this giant pyrocumulus cloud as I thought it would dissipate quickly, but it hovered over the city for days.  The air felt very hot and dry.  Ash rained onto our car which was parked in the lot next to our building.

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