Pictures of the Sierra Peak Fire
Copyright © 2005-2009, B. Vanderkolk - Updated 060208

Day 1

This is on the first day of the fire, Feb 6, 2006, looking due east from my location. The fire is about 20 miles away, but the
Santa Ana winds were blowing the smoke and ash my direction. There was ash falling like a very light snow.

A few minutes later than the above picture. Under the shapr edge of the smoke cloud where it reaches the horizon,
you can see the left edge of the Santa Ana Mountains. This is Santa Ana Canyon, where the winds get their name.
Further to the left you can see more mountains further off in the distance. That's Big Bear at 70 miles away.
Except for the fire, it was a very clear day for the LA basin.

The obligatory "Sun Through The Smoke" shot. Later in the day the smoke was enough to make you
catch your breath when you stepped outside. The winds were so strong the smoke was being
held close to the ground instead of billowing upward.

Day 2

This is Sunset on the second day of the fire. The white coulds are just high clouds. The dark clouds are from the fire.

This is at night on the second day of the fire.

This and the following images are also at night on the second day of the fire. These were all taken
through my telescope. The flames take on a pinkish cast due to the digital camera picking
up the infrared heat signature of the fire. These were all 8 second exposures, and
captured much more than the naked eye could see, even in the telescope.

Day 3

These images show the fire on the late night of the third day. In this image about 1/4 the way
from the left you can just make out a electricity transmission tower. Helps give a sense of scale.
Again, these images were all taken through my telescope.

This is a slightly wider shot. From this vantage point, the mountains have two ridges. The fire
is burning on and behind the first ridge. The second ridge is just visible further up.
Look at about the same level as the top of the stadium lights.

Same view as above, just later, showing a large flare up.

This is a 40 second QuickTime .MOV file (10 megs) showing one of the flareups.