Hearts of Fire: Waldo Canyon.

Infinity Pond in a greener year.

First of all, the herd here at Infinity Farm is fine and very grateful to say so. The high side of the national news focusing on Colorado Springs and the Waldo Canyon fire is that we all get reminded that friends in other places care about us. Thank you.

The Waldo Canyon wildfire started 6 days ago; they all start small. Some say Colorado has been in a drought cycle the last few years, some say that global warming causes global disasters. Either way, there are about a dozen fires burning in Colorado now and ours is the most destructive.

About two days in, the fire took off bucking like rank stock, bolting three directions at once and kicking up a smoke cloud so hot and thick and dark- that the sun got spooked. The fire tripled in size that day. We were all intimidated, except the firefighters who seemed to find a new commitment. Braver than brave, and tougher than tough. Words fail me in the face of such heroes.

Do you have an evacuation plan for your barn? I did, but it didn’t give me much comfort. I second guessed and worried.  Some things had changed since the plan was made, how would I compensate? Would the old horses do okay? How much time would I have?

The next morning the fire headed off in another direction. I confess a giant sigh of relief, followed by a dose of guilt- knowing the fire was headed towards others. Currently the fire is about 15 miles from us and not pushing this way. For now.

Hundreds of homes have been lost, thousands of acres of forest destroyed, along with the animals that live there. As time passes the list of casualties will grow, but I do take comfort from our friends and neighbors offering help- and asking for mine.  Our community has blossomed with volunteers and donations, everyone doing the best job possible of helping each other. Waldo Canyon has impacted each of us personally, but somehow most of us feel fortunate. Our hearts burn stronger than fire.

The fire is apparently quite photogenic- especially the night shots. We are inundated with very dramatic photos of bright rage and destruction. Angry sunsets, fire racing down mountainsides, and ash where a family used to live. So much loss, so many teary faces. The photos are posted and re-posted, I am sure I’ve seen some of the photos dozens of times. I posted one myself a few days back. Our burned acres seem to extend around the globe.

The photos are burned into our memory, too, and I have seen enough. It isn’t that I’m squeamish; no one with horses has that luxury. But at some point the flames become gratuitous, and I’m at that point.

A few weeks after 9/11, we started to hear the psychological opinion that watching footage of planes crashing into the towers again and again might not be the healthiest rerun to watch. By the time that information got to me, I was so depressed I couldn’t ride. Yes, I can get that depressed.

I know we will be fighting this fire, in one way or another, from now on. Maybe it’s time to discipline ourselves a bit. It isn’t going to put out the fire if we stop posting photos of it, but it might be a start.

I am tired of orange and black. Let’s post something with some green in it. Think of it as an affirmation.

We love you, Colorado. More than ever.

Anna Blake, Infinity Farm.

This blog is free, and it always will be. Free to read, but also free of ads because I turn away sponsorships and pay to keep ads off my site. I like to read a clean page and think you do too. If you appreciate the work I do, or if your horse does, consider making a donation.

Anna Blake

10 thoughts on “Hearts of Fire: Waldo Canyon.”

  1. In yesterday’s color-coded advancement map, the newest areas were in green. While they still represented new fire, they were so small in comparison to the monstrous (yellow) growth from Tuesday, that I thought “oh, blessed green.”

    Our barn fire when I was a kid resulted in a new baby rabbit when my mom rescued my then-separated male and female from the flames and they got some “alone time” in my bedroom. Snowball, pure white with grey eyes, lived an unusually long life for his kind.

    There will be tears, and rain, and green again.


  2. So sorry to hear about the awful fires which have had little coverage here in Europe, where floods, ironically, have been dominating the news agenda. Things are not right, it’s ever more obvious. All we can do is hope friends are ok and send all good wishes that the fires are halted with as few casualties as possible. Keep yourselves safe!

    • Thanks for your concern, it has been a week and things are slowly improving. Teach your horses to swim, I guess. I wish we took better care of our planet.

  3. This is so scary it’s not even funny. I have a dear friend in Co. Springs and we’ve been in touch daily. So far things are safe for him, but you just never know hour to hour. Your post makes me think about emergency plans for my farm and it makes me realize we don’t have anything concrete … and we should. I have things thought out in my head, but that’s not good enough. And hell, we don’t even have a trailer. Ug. Here, the threat probably won’t be fire. Most likely it would be hurricane or nuclear, since we live only a few miles from a facility. Yeah, that’s some scary stuff. But enough about me … I hope things continue to stay safe for you and your farm. And you’re right; looking at photos and video of this mess over and over keeps the adrenaline pumping, and that’s not healthy, so good on you for focusing on something else for a bit.

    • Thanks for your concern… and yes, it is good to have a plan. Lots of folks going home today, and roads reopening. But it is still a tinderbox, so dangerous this summer.

  4. Dear Anna, What a well written piece. I love that your heart burns stronger than fire! The photos is just beautiful.


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