This blog post will sound familiar to one of my sisters. She sent me an email asking about the wildfires in New Mexico and after sending her a reply, I thought it would make a good blog post, too. I've made a few changes.
There are wildfires all over the state; it's getting ridiculous. It's a combination of high winds, low humidity (single-digit!), and no rain. The "April winds" are finally over as of yesterday, according to the weather guy on TV. Seriously. The sustained high winds are usually only for the entire month of April, but this year they started in mid-March and kept going until mid-June. And single-digit humidity has been the norm for the last several weeks. According to the weather station we have at our house (so we can always know how miserable we are), the humidity a few days ago was 2%! I didn't know it could get that low. I told Mom that when it gets up to 15% it starts to feel muggy! When I go outside I can feel the moisture being sucked out of my skin.
The fire on the border with Arizona blew a lot of smoke into Albuquerque, with all kinds of air quality warnings. It blew a little bit of smoke here for a few days, but it wasn't that bad here, compared with Albuquerque.
There's another fire in Raton, near the border with Colorado that made them shut down Interstate 25 for several days. The fire started on one side of the interstate, but then it managed to jump over to the other side. We have friends who live up there and they had to evacuate. For several days they didn't even know if they still had a house or not. Fortunately, their house survived, but the fire came within 1,000 feet of their house -- flames 200 - 300 feet high. A DC-10 airplane dropped slurry in the area, saving their house and about 15 other houses.
Here are two videos on youtube.
In this one, the noise you hear is the wind hitting the camera's microphone.
And now there's a fire just north of Santa Fe. We could see the smoke the first day, as the wind blew the smoke our way.
And there are more fires in the far southern part of the state.
The first 10 minutes of the local (Albuquerque) TV newscast is devoted to updates on all the fires in the state, which is kind of a welcome change from the usual, the first 10 minutes devoted to shootings, stabbings, horrific drunk driving accidents, etc.