Monday, May 07, 2007

Wildfires in the Panhandle

There are currently two wildfires raging in this area of the Florida Panhandle, one in Walton County just north of Choctawhatchee Bay and the other in Bay County just a few miles east of here. It is believed that embers blown south from the Walton County fire ignited the second blaze near the coast.

All of Florida is experiencing severe to moderate drought. Our particular region has a large entrenched dome of high pressure sitting over us that, along with extremely low relative humidity, has created a favorable environment for wildfires. A steady and dry northerly wind has been fanning the flames and as of this writing the Bay County fire is burning on both sides of U.S. Hwy. 98 and into residential sections of the small resort community of Panama City Beach (where seven homes have burned as of this writing).

I just happened to be heading home from a trip to Shell Island today when my vehicle was diverted off Hwy. 98 due to smoke and flames along the roadway. I did have my camera along and took some pictures to share which y'all.

It sure did remind me a lot of where I had just moved from.

Approaching the fire from the east on U.S. 98

Where we were forced to detour off the highway.

A western vantage from a second-floor deck in Panama City Beach.


Audie said...

Probably would not be a good time to burn any large recumbent-bicycle shipping boxes out back ya house.

Or tumbleweed Christmas trees.

Devastatin' Dave said...

Asking Beamis not to burn something is like asking not to breathe. Beamis, got your red card?

Mikee said...

Tumbleweed X-mass tree...HAHAHAHAHA

That is one of those hysterical memories lost and now found. I can still feel the heat inside the Nature Center.

beamis said...

Hey Aud----remember when we burned those huge cardboard boxes that were used to pack refrigerators in? The light from the fire woke Jim Starling up out of a deep REM sleep.

No red card Dave. What's the fun of puttin' 'em out anyway? Never did understand those testosterone fueled idiots who put fires out! What up wiff dat?

Audie said...

Where'd you get the fridge boxes? The one I remember is the one my long-wheelbase recumbent bicycle arrived in. I hung onto it for a few days, til I was sure I wouldn't need it, but until then, about five times a day, I'd have you goin', "You gonna need that box? Are you through with that box yet? Can I have that box yet?"

As I recall, it was worth the wait. Something about some dried leaves up the hill from the BBQ pit.... One of the few times, I think, that I saw you run for the garden hose.

And Mikee was inside for the "lighting of the Christmas tree"? I thought he was out there with you. Who was? Gator? One or two others?

beamis said...

Kevin Walton was there to make sure nothing serious happened. I think Art Lateral sent him out to keep an eye on things.

SteveD said...

Was this before or after you set the superintendent on fire on July 4th?