Posted by: Bonnie Phelps | August 9, 2018

Holy Smokes at Midnight


Many of us on Palomar woke up about midnight because of smoke.  I turned on the outside lights, could see smoke in the air and it was burning my eyes.  My husband’s truck was gone and our daughter-in-law’s car was in our driveway.  They were out with quite a few others checking for a live fire. They first went to the fire department but didn’t detect smoke over there at all so drove to the camp since that is where two of our granddaughters are for Horse Camp this week.  With the amount of smoke, I was expecting to see flames pretty close.  Wandering around outside in my jammies, I guessed it was smoke from the Holy Fire.

However, smoke was so strong on this side of the mountain that the fire department was called by us and quite a few others. I felt kind of bad getting them out of bed and seeing them go by as by then we’d realized it was just drifting smoke, but a lot of it.

This morning we learn that the Holy Fire went from 4000 acres to 9200 overnight so our inconvenience is nothing compared to what 20,000 people have with their evacuation orders and all they are dealing with.

I can’t help but want to get out there and do all we can to make our properties more fire safe.  I’ve been preaching for years to remove dead and dying trees.  I’ve suggested thinning to  ’80 per acre’ that forestry folks have said would maintain a healthy forest up here during times of drought.  Many areas have up 80 trees in a few square feet.  Cedars die from the bottom, up and firs from the top, down.   We need to get more guys on weed eaters and mowers (with hoses or water tenders close) and remove extra debris.

Let’s all take action on the info that everyone should have received by now via our local, friendly fire department.  They have been visiting each property with recommendations for making your property more fire safe.  We see a lot of folks cleaning up but there is still much fuel on the ground, right next to cabins.

Interested in having some locals do the work?  Our Fire Safe Council has a list of Local Resources for you.  (Would you like to add your name to the list?  Just let me know.)

Much more info heading your way, keep the date open on the 16th for a great how-to class, plus, here are some messages you might review:

2017 The End of the Road

2016 Note on your Door?

2012 Check your Trees

2010 Oak Tree Update

2018 Saving the Oaks from GSOB

Stay safe out there and enjoy the rest of your summer!

Bonnie Phelps





  1. Really great missive!!!!!!!!!!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: