Thursday, August 21, 2014

Rappel crews visit the camp

With the fire hazard getting into the higher ranges, a couple of helicopter rappel teams have been stationed at the base.  While all the crews are trained to work in and around helicopters and exit them while hovering above the ground,


the rappel teams exit the machine several hundred feet up, rappelling down ropes to the ground where they can then cut helicopter pads with chainsaws, if needed.

They have to practice these manoeuvres regularly to make sure it all goes safely and according to plan.


These crews are very mobile and are moved to bases all around the forested areas of the province – depending on the fire hazard in that particular area.  They generally have a 212 or similar helicopter assigned to them that they travel with, and a ground vehicle that follows with more gear and personal effects.


We’ve had three different ‘RAP’ crews at the fire base so far during the summer.

Back in July (!) the flowers were out …

and so was Hailey.


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This photo won me a prize in the local contest at work in the Flora and Fauna category.Ivan F&F2

I also got three honourable mentions for Macro and Weather shots, and a group pic.

Ivan - Weather1Ivan - Macro2

Hailey and I managed to sneak away from work a time or two in the last month, and went on a short road trip around various areas in British Columbia, camping on deserted lake shores and visiting natural hot springs.




And quite rare for this area, we had a tornado alert one day and just recently there was a 4.2 magnitude earthquake very close.  I never noticed it, but apparently there were some power outages as a result.IMG_4521front

Fire #34, as mentioned in my last post is still being classified as ‘Being Held’, though with recent wet and cool weather, perhaps one day it will be called ‘Under Control’ sometime before the snow flies!  Speaking of snow flying … I expect the fire camp will be shut down for the season in the next 2-3 weeks, freeing me up for some more short expeditions, and gearing up for the inevitable migration southward, sometime in October or November!  Can’t wait to get back on the road again!