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Hercules Glade/Martin Fire

You might have heard about the wildfire that raced through the Mark Twain National Forest last week. It wasn't as devastating as the Colorado wildfires. Fortunately no one here died and no houses burned down (only one was a little singed). The end result was 1,500 acres of national forest burnt cinder black. I heard two explanations for the cause: one a spark from a brush hog and the other a spark from a lawn mower. I suppose that more or less amounts to the same thing. 

Husband and I went down on Saturday because he grew up down there. We were curious to see what had burned and what was standing. Many's the time when we were dating that we went four-wheeler riding on the government property. You could smell the smoke in Garrison, Mo, about ten miles from the fire.

The Missouri Forestry Department brought in crews from Michigan, Ohio, and Iowa to help contain the blaze because Missouri crews had been fighting another fire up north all week. 

We talked to a crew out of Iowa who had no clue how to get around on the twisty roads. Husband asked if it burned the Miriam Cemetery (the sign was sure burned away) and the firefighter said he didn't know because they couldn't find it. They wouldn't let us go on down that road because trees were falling all over the place down there.

Campground at Miriam Cemetery Road

The trees are so thick you couldn't get a decent shot of the valley below the campground, but the entire area was black.

You can see on the left side of the road where the fire was contained. On the right side of the road, it hasn't been touched by fire. With all the ash and leafless trees it was like a bizarre winter/summer scene.

The area a little farther down the road from the campground was still smoking on Saturday. We ran into a couple of firetrucks, a forestry truck with a trailer behind it, and a some machinery they used to help control the fire. On Friday they went ahead and set fire to meet the fire that was already burning to keep it from spreading to other parts of the forest. As I understand it, they got it contained by Sunday or Monday.


  1. How out of the loop am I that I didn't even know about this fire?! Wow! I'm so glad they got it under control.

  2. Wow. It's amazing no one died. What is it with natural disasters lately?

    1. We've been glad for the rain, which will hopefully keep the fires down. I guess most people don't stop to think they can cause major damage with a lawn mower or a bush hog.

  3. Unreal. I'm so glad they got it under control. And yeah, I wouldn't be thinking a lawnmower could start a fire, but when things are so dry like they are this year I can see it.


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