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 Post subject: Eagle Creek Fires from Table with Kep and Bos 9/10/17
 Post Posted: September 11th, 2017, 9:45 am 
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Attachment:
File comment: Beacon and beyond from Aldrich
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Here's a smattering of pics from our trip. We went Bonneville to PCT to Heartbreak to Table Summit to NW Ridge to PCT to Aldrich. I'll add more later, but, hey, you are bored at work or retired and you want to see some pictures of the damage from the fires, right?

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File comment: From lower elevations this is what Munra looked like.
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File comment: A ridge in the Tanner drainage, a mile or more south of the Columbia (difficult to tell).
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File comment: Campfires near Gillette...the ash didn't look much more than a week old.
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File comment: Another fire ring. Why bother to pack out trash?
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File comment: Nesmith.
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File comment: Kep at the summit.
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File comment: Eagle Creek
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File comment: Big surprise when Bosterson arrived at the top.
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File comment: Summit view.
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 Post subject: Re: Eagle Creek Fires from Table with Kep and Bos 9/10/17
 Post Posted: September 11th, 2017, 12:11 pm 
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File comment: Some of these pics were taken later in the day from Aldrich.
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File comment: We saw more vultures than we had ever seen before.
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File comment: Bosterson kept finding burnt organic matter that turned to ash when you poked it with a trekking pole. Here's Kep with a leaf that stayed together. Imagine the thousands of burning bits that flew over the Gorge in the fire's early days. Kind of amazing that there weren't more fires in WA.
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 Post subject: Re: Eagle Creek Fires from Table with Kep and Bos 9/10/17
 Post Posted: September 11th, 2017, 12:52 pm 
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Kind of amazing that there weren't more fires in WA.


My guess is that for stuff like leaves, they had cooled down by the time they made it across the river and landed, so couldn't start any fires. I would think that if it's going to fly for a mile, it's got to be an ember of wood to keep the heat for long enough. And I don't think it was so windy to keep a decent sized ember aloft for that far, whereas when being blown west it didn't have to get that far to land on something that would burn.

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 Post subject: Re: Eagle Creek Fires from Table with Kep and Bos 9/10/17
 Post Posted: September 11th, 2017, 3:38 pm 
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Hey, thanks for kicking this off, Chase! Just had a wonderful day out there, yesterday! Guess I could toss a few more photos this way. :)

    Image
    One thing that has startled me since the fires began is the great number of raptors (especially vultures) constantly circling overhead.


    Image
    Munra looking like toast. (Later shots show lots of green still there, though.)


    Image
    Gillette Lake, lovely as ever.


    Image
    News helicopter doing a Nesmith fly-by. We didn't see a single aircraft involved in suppression all day long.


    Image
    Massive controlled burn (we could only presume) on south side of Cascade Locks.


    Image
    Skeletal tree remains on ridge up Moffett drainage.


    Image
    Another look at controlled burn from Two Chiefs overlook.


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    Little smokers were along nearly all ridges from Angels Rest eastward. This is probably near Ruckel.


    Image
    Best view of the day! No evidence, whatsoever, of either East Crater or Bear Creek fires!


    Image
    Not a pleasant sight. We really felt for those folks down in Cascade Locks.


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    Nearly 180° of burned area, still smoking... Just staggering.


    Image
    Look who showed up! Call this the "Reverse Lewis & Clark" pose?


    Image
    Contrast stretched to highlight all the little smokers along the ridge east of Nesmith.


    Image
    So nasty!


    Image
    We could see Wind and Dog on arrival, but they were quickly enveloped with smoke as we watched.


    Image
    The buzzards were out in force, my friends!


    Image
    "Nice birdy! Hey birdy-birdy-birdy! Smile!"


    Image
    A face only a mother could love?


drm wrote:
Quote:
Kind of amazing that there weren't more fires in WA.

My guess is that for stuff like leaves, they had cooled down by the time they made it across the river and landed, so couldn't start any fires. I would think that if it's going to fly for a mile, it's got to be an ember of wood to keep the heat for long enough. And I don't think it was so windy to keep a decent sized ember aloft for that far, whereas when being blown west it didn't have to get that far to land on something that would burn.

We were finding things other than leaves, too. Large chunks of burnt bark and such.

    Image
    This chunk was easily 4x as large before I picked it up and it fell apart.


    Image
    Can't see into the valleys, but view better than from the road argues in favor of the "mosaic" characterization.


    Image
    Slightly less crispy view of Munra, again arguing "mosaic" is what we have. For now.


    Image
    Ruckel Ridge area. More mosaic.


    Image
    Snagging a shot of Mount Adams from Aldrich Butte.


    Image
    Wauna Viewpoint


    Image
    My last, and favorite, shot of the day epitomizes the intense love/hate feelings I have for all this mess!


Such a day... Surreal. Tragic. Beautiful. Certainly memorable!

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 Post subject: Re: Eagle Creek Fires from Table with Kep and Bos 9/10/17
 Post Posted: September 11th, 2017, 4:43 pm 
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Great reports from both of you .... I am just now coming to grips with the losses out there.

In regards to the buzzards ..... I did the NW ridge of Table a few weeks past, in the later afternoon. Going up there were 3 birds in that snag. Coming down, there were, as I recall, 13 or 14 birds. I joked with the birds that whoever sent out the tweet (or was it a squawk?) that there was going to be a Luau at dusk, got it wrong!

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 Post subject: Re: Eagle Creek Fires from Table with Kep and Bos 9/10/17
 Post Posted: September 11th, 2017, 4:49 pm 
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Thanks for the photos! Hoping for all the smoke to clear so we can get some views farther up the drainages. For now, looks like the WA side will be the go to hiking area for some time!

dn

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 Post subject: Re: Eagle Creek Fires from Table with Kep and Bos 9/10/17
 Post Posted: September 11th, 2017, 6:34 pm 
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Hmm, interesting. Especially intrigued by kepPNW's ambivalence. Yes, there is some enigmatic beauty and excitement to all this. And from a purely selfish standpoint, I like this, while also empathizing with the hardship it's causing. I'd be out there too, but I assume sr14 is a zoo, and I'm currently obsessed with hood.


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 Post subject: Re: Eagle Creek Fires from Table with Kep and Bos 9/10/17
 Post Posted: September 11th, 2017, 7:01 pm 
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I'm a little late to this party, and my dinky little old camera can't really pull off what the others got, but here are some pics.

Gorge seen around noon-thirty as I started up from a "closed" trailhead.

Image

Photogenic buzzards.

Image

On the NW ridge of Table, taking a picture of Chase taking a picture of aforementioned photogenic buzzards.

Image

Dusky light around 6pm or so from Aldrich Butte, looking west.

Image

Munra is the little nubbin straight across. Poor thing is fried. Seems ironic to have been worrying about hordes "damaging" the moss all this time...

Image

It shouldn't have been surprising, but it really was astonishing to see how barren much of the Gorge is. (The face of Nesmith especially is going to be a sore sight for the eyes - I think even St. Peter's Dome burned.) And to see how much active fire is still happening out there... let us all pray for rain.

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 Post subject: Re: Eagle Creek Fires from Table with Kep and Bos 9/10/17
 Post Posted: September 11th, 2017, 7:30 pm 
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Chip Down wrote:
Hmm, interesting. Especially intrigued by kepPNW's ambivalence. Yes, there is some enigmatic beauty and excitement to all this. And from a purely selfish standpoint, I like this, while also empathizing with the hardship it's causing. I'd be out there too, but I assume sr14 is a zoo, and I'm currently obsessed with hood.


I've driven SR14 nearly every day for the past week and it's not too bad. Busy, but moves along just fine.

dn

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 Post subject: Re: Eagle Creek Fires from Table with Kep and Bos 9/10/17
 Post Posted: September 12th, 2017, 4:57 am 
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Encouraging, looks like lots of green on the front.

Hopefully a patchwork of mosaic up the gullies/ridges where we can't see much yet.

Yeah, we can stop worrying about the lichen on Munra for awhile.

I think WADOT has restricted SR14 to cars and light trucks only until 84 opens.


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