Hard to believe that a year has passed since the devastation that was the Station Fire. In some ways it seems a life time ago; in others like it was yesterday.
Controversy still swirls around the circumstances regarding how the Station Fire became the inferno that it did.
On that Wednesday night on Aug. 26 last year when the fire first erupted, I was attending a Crescenta Valley Community Association meeting at the recently completed community room at Dunsmore Park. Unknown to those civic leaders in the room with me, I was also getting information for the Crescenta Valley Weekly which was supposed to be launched the following Thursday, Sept. 3.
My husband Steve, who sits on the CV Town Council, usually attended the meetings with me, but he was out working with the CV Sheriffs Station helping with traffic for a small fire that had broken out in the afternoon. He slipped into the meeting around 8:30, still in his uniform, and mumbled that the fire should be out soon.
As history proved, that was not the case.
By Oct. 16, the official end of the Station Fire, 160,577 acres had burned, two firefighters lost their lives and many structures were destroyed. Smoke blanketed the Crescenta Valley on numerous days and my neighborhood was evacuated not once but three times. The fire in fact delayed the distribution of the CV Weekly by a day; we weren’t able to deliver it until Friday, Sept. 4.
The reason why the fire spread as it did – whether due to economics, poor preparation or acting on a calculated risk – is a subject still being heatedly debated. What is not in question is that the fire was one of the largest in California’s history.
This week, the CV Weekly focuses on the impact the fire has had on our community. In addition to stunning photos that can be found on pages 12 and 13, you might want to check out a video at http://vimeo.com/12254391. Created by someone named Tocho, Angeles Requiem was recorded with a motion sensing camera in a nearby foothills canyon. According to the website, there were two cameras in this area. One burned completely, but other was installed in a rocky streambed that was away from anything flammable, and insulated by being anchored under a boulder. The video shows the animals that visited before and after the fire as well as documenting the fire itself.