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At 10:00am a forest fire was reported in Four Mile Canyon somewhat near where we live. Yet unaware of the fire, our family drove down the mountain canyon around noon today. In spite of cloudless skies, we saw one strange thick cloud off to the north-east. We thought it might be due to the 45-mph winds, but this cloud was just too thick. I was able to get information on my iPhone as we drove through Nederland, so we quickly figured out what was happening. We were able to get down the canyon before the road was closed. Once in Boulder, the smoke made it difficult to breathe even with our windows up and AC running. Ash was falling on our car. The smoke cloud soon covered all of Boulder and surrounding areas.

We took a round-about way to get back home a few hours later. Our home is safe and not in the way of the fire, which is now 3,500 acres. The big Four Mile Canyon fire was started by an RV crashing into a propane truck. There were two additional fires but the smaller ones were contained right away. One of the smaller fires was very close to us, so I’m glad that one is out.

A slurry bomber flies over a burning home as seen from Flagstaff Mountain. Photo by Mark Leffingwell (MARK LEFFINGWELL)

http://www.dailycamera.com/ci_15998749

So far nobody has been hurt. Here’s more photos.

All day long I’ve been nervously keeping my eye on the disaster and my heart goes out to all the families who have been evacuated and lost their homes.

Here’s an map someone made of the fire and evacuation areas. We live just south of Nederland on that map.

http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?ie=UTF8&hl=en&msa=0&msid=116450738350250475290.00048f9b63b159a7d3dcf&ll=40.089892,-105.302582&spn=0.113204,0.220757&t=h&z=12

Adding this time-lapse video taken from about 8-8:30pm last night.

Life in a small, mountain town has its special moments. Today Satori walked into Nature’s Own store in Nederland and asked the owner if he had any Triceratops dinosaurs. He really got a kick out of that and asked her if she went to school. “Not anymore”, she said. 🙂 After a friendly interview with my daughter they gave her this cool heart! As we left the store, everyone said “Goodbye Satori!!!” We love that store, we love rocks and learning toys, and they’ve got it all, and always send us off with a pretty rock, little animal toy or this heart.

Gift from Nature's Own, Nederland

Gift from Nature's Own, Nederland

Then off to Doc Joe’s to give Maddie our dog a consult for an ailment. He sends us off with lots of stuff we needed, no payment required, he’ll put it on our bill. But first, he gives us a big hug!

Then down to Boulder where the attention isn’t quite as personal, yet everyone recognizes us. The bird store remembers me and recommends this ultraviolet sticker to put on our windows so birds don’t fly into our windows anymore.

Bird window stickers

Bird window stickers

Playfair Toys always recognizes us, but never remembers my name. A nice friendly toy store which we love and visit as much as we can.

Today we dined at the Cafe Gondolier on Pearl street in Boulder. Satori had spaghetti and ravioli, the perfect feast to celebrate our Papa Piccolo rowing. 🙂

Gondolier in Boulder

Gondolier in Boulder

Last night we also did our first shadow play. I made up 4 puppets and David and Satori acted out Papa Piccolo. I did get a video out of it, but won’t embed it here, it’s too amateurish, lol! We had problems with the lighting to say the least, but I had a great time watching them. 🙂 Here’s the link to the video if you’re interested.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V64LKdz9Lss