Last Wednesday (July 23rd), I was called to standby for the fire dept and went out to man a roadblock to keep people away from a forest fire in our area (30 kms from my home). I thought the fire would be out by the next day.
On Saturday, after spending the day in Calgary and Lethbridge, I got the news that the fire was 11 kms from my home. I returned home Sunday (after the fire chief called me in), and lo and behold, an alert for a possible one-hour evacuation had begun. In a rush, I got as much of my valuables as possible in my truck, and headed to fire duty (basically sitting around waiting to take care of spot fires in town). Our town was invaded by firefighting and government agencies with many types of trucks, equipment, choppers, spotter planes, and water bombers everywhere.
When I leave my house for work or fire duty, I've been driving around like a Gypsy with my truck packed with as much as my stuff as I can carry. But it looks like the fire may not hit my town as was feared, and my house probably won't burn! But I can tell you, it's a strange feeling to be in your house, and doing regular everyday stuff like taking a shower, watching TV, or cooking dinner when there is a huge wildfire raging a couple kms away!
The fire is still raging in areas, but the forest fire crews have done a great job to keep it from the town sites. I'll be on fire duty tonight, but it seems redundant at this time as the town sites seem safe at this point (and we can't go to the bush to fight the fire as we are responsible for fires that start in the town sites).
Lost Creek Fire, CBC News