In 1988 many firefighters from around the United States and Canada ended up in Yellowstone National Park assigned to the many fires in and near the park. Some firefighters made multiple trips to the area. I only made it for one trip to the fires there but that assignment lasted 30 days. It was an interesting time to be sure. I had never been on a fire so far from home (Arizona) and had never been on a fire for so long (30 days). After a few weeks I thought I might never get home. I missed my son’s first day of kindergarten. When I called home, the kids would cry, I would cry… It was a tough time. But there were adventures to be had. The firefighting was intense, the scenery was amazing and the inter-personal interactions were often quite entertaining.
This week I’ve included 4 short stories that you should find interesting and entertaining. It’s definitely a behind the scenes kind of view of what happens at a large, long term fire incident. There were many other short stories that could be included this week but I don’t think you want to spend 2 hours of your day listening to me reminiscing and laughing with my friends. These are good examples of hard working, professional and committed firefighters… who also qualify as knuckleheads. Hope you enjoy this weeks story. Thanks for listening everyone.
4 thoughts on “#51 – Yellowstone Follies”
I enjoyed listening to that Bobbie. I was on the Hellroaring Fire that year and remember the coats donated to fire fighters by the local Lions club and the constant cautioning that if you left even a candy bar wrapper in your pack you were chumming for grizzles.
I know Tom, wasnt that crazy? Makes for a funny story too. Thanks for commenting.
I was on the Yellowstone fire in an inexperienced District crew from the beginning. They sent us before they had decided to suppress the fire. In one of our spike camps there were piles of MREs and mixed in, packages of other food. My dinner that night was sweet rolls. We never saw a bear and had been there through half of our 21 days before a Park Service rep told us how we should deal with all of our garbage down to the toilet paper. We were gone before the fire blew up thankfully. I saw some things that I can only describe as pretty big clusters.
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Thanks Stacia, We all have such vivid memories of yellowstone. Thanks for sharing some of yours. I love hearing from others on these stories. Please feel free to comment whenever the spirit moves you. 🙂