Wednesday, June 24, 2009

The joys of summer wildfires....

I'm sure you hear every year of the wildfire season in California... almost like Hurricane Season in the Southeast and Tornado Season in the Midwest.

Annually, CalFire (also known as the California Department of Forestry) conducts training for local fire departments in Dublin should a wildfire pop up in their respective areas. Today was that day!

Dublin is the home of Camp Parks, a reserve training facility for the 11,000 men and women in the Bay Area serving as Army reservists. It's not unusual to hear artillery and cannon fire going off at all hours of the day! The only thing that bothered me? When they did an air-raid exercise at 3:30 AM!! That one took a few years off my life, I think. If one is up early enough (read: 4:30 AM) and the weather is still, one can actually hear the strains of "Reville" come through the chilly morning air.

(and for those of you who are fans of Mythbusters on Discovery--the Alameda County Sheriff's Bomb Disposal Range that they're so fond of is located just on the other side of the base!)

First clue that it was training day?

Luckily with all the signs, Dubliners don't get alarmed when they see the plumes of smoke wafting over the hills... (plus, they put notices in the local papers)

I had seen them working this area earlier in the morning; the brilliant bright orange of the controlled burn stood out on the brown, dry hills.

The operation headquarters from afar...

And not to be left out, they also train the aerial forces as well!

Thanks to the men and women of CalFire!

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