08 February 2009

Freeway Complex Fire in Carbon Canyon DVD Available

Thanks to Sleepy Hollow resident and freelance photographer, Jose Fernandez, a compelling visual record of the stunning scenes that made up the Carbon Canyon portion of November's Freeway Complex Fire (the above is a photo I took in the late afternoon of 15 November from Sleepy Hollow looking west) is now available in an approximately 5-6 minute DVD.

Jose's keen eye captured so much of the danger of the fire, the determined efforts of firefighting personnel from many areas of the state, and the devastation left afterwards, as well as offering impressive aesthetic renderings of the impact of the fire on Sleepy Hollow, Vellano, Olinda Village and other Canyon settings.

What the DVD brought to my mind was the multi-layered intersection of open space, rampant suburban development, drought, depleting resources, circumstance (chance? fate? predetermination?) and other dynamics all came together between 15-17 November.

As has been stated here and elsewhere, if the fire had started in or closer to the Canyon, Sleepy Hollow would very likely have been as decimated as much of the Brea side was, except that 130 homes are here (and were spared.) The impact of the moment tends to fade greatly over a relatively short period of time.

Jose's DVD is a valuable historical record that keeps the images of those difficult three days fresh and alive. Hopefully, future planning of the Canyon will include at least some incorporation of the work Jose (and others) did to document what can happen when fire and human intrusion into wildlands collide.

For those interested in purchasing copies of the DVD, which sell for $5, please contact Jose by e-mail at linda@kuriake.com.

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