Friday, November 9, 2012

Sparky, the Firebug!??

Gulf Shores, AL    High:  65   Low:  42

If you've been following the blog, you know that Sparky LOVES campfires...There's something irresistible about the flames licking the wood, the flames dancing around in the fire pit, swallowing up the logs, consuming the wood...Sparky is a great fire starter with her little fire pit method...Get the little fire starter wrapped yellow logs that are sold at Wally World, or use the dark brown little fire block pieces that are soaked in something that get your fire going, make a little teepee of light kindling wood on top of the fire starter log, light a match and watch it burn. Sparky could watch a campfire for hours if she didn't get sleepy while becoming mesmerized by the flames. (It's probably the glass or two of wine that's really to blame, explains E.) And those colorful flame sticks you throw into the fire to cause the beautiful blues, greens and purples? Can't forget those! Eldy always has to put the fire out, as Sparky can never make it to the final minutes of the dying burning embers...(Sigh...That's right, says E. I'm the last one in on campfire nights.)

So when Sparky saw smoke in the sky, she knew there was FIRE...There had to be a big fire in the area....We pulled off to watch it from a distance...
We saw it from several stopping points along the road as we were heading into town for a pizza...The wind picked up...
And the fire picked up.....Clouds of big black smoke billowing towards the high rises on the ocean...
It looked worrisome.....
But it was a prescribed burn..We saw firefighters and equipment monitoring the burn...They have to burn the grasses, debris and forest litter that hurricanes bring in and pack down when the water surges come in and then retreat...The debris left behind packs down and the plants can't breathe and grow. The risk of wildfires increases with the packed grasses so the county does controlled burns to return grasslands back to natural habitat. The burning of the undergrowth release nutrients back into the soil, and helps animals species as well....They have cool season burns and growing season burns in Alabama. Hmph! Didn't know that!

Sparky's stomach was growling so on we went to Papa Ricco's Pizzaria, in Gulf Shores..."home of warm beer and lousy pizza."  The pizza was actually quite good, and the beer nice and cold. We were wondering about the state of the fire, so we went back the same way to check on the way home...When you see a large grass fire, you are wondering if it really is under control, but we guess it was...there was fire equipment on standby, and firefighters watching in all directions...and then there were the gawkers...That would be Sparky and Eldo....(I swear that's how Sparky got her nickname, she's a pyro nut! says E., as he shakes his head, watching his Sparky watch the fire.)

Still burning....Hope it's under control as they said it was....Sparky talked to a fire supervisor briefly, and they were very non-chalant about it so it must have been under control. The amount of smoke in the air was alarming, you would think the public would be hollering about pollution, but apparently, it's an evil necessity to keep wildfires under control. Seems like an oxymoron, sort of....You create fires to avoid fires....OK, then....Here's my last shot of the's so unusual, we're not sure what happened with the camera...driving along and I accidentally hit the button as we were coming back home??? Threw it in the blog just to preserve it....

Just another boring day (NOT!) in the life of full time Rvers.....  :-)


  1. Great pictures including that last one. My lungs have decided they don't like smoke. It's a real campfire bummer.

  2. Campfires are at the top of my list too. One of the first tips someone gave us is to use a little tiki torch fuel to start the fire. We carry it in a one gallon gas can and buy the citronella fuel which also helps with mosquitos.

  3. We love a good fire too, but for some stupid reason, we end up with the most ill-placed fire rings! We decided we'll pick up one of those portable fire bowls, or whatever you call em.

  4. I like the campfires if it's not too cold out. I'm such a wuss. Lots of prescribed burns in Montana to keep forest fires under control. Don't think it worked too well this year though.

  5. We love a nice campfire, especially when it includes some marshmallows, chocolate and graham crackers! :-)

  6. Also love campfires, but that controlled burn looks a bit scary to me.

  7. Kathy and I have enjoyed our campfires since our tenting days. I haven't used any liquid starter or the little brown starters in years. Anytime we get coffees or fast food to go (not often) we get the cup trays but instead of them ending up in the landfill they help start our fires.

    Place a single layer in the bottom of even damp but not water filled fire pits. Build your little teppee and light it. The holes in the cupholders allow air under the fire until you have a nice flame going and they burn up. Be Safe and Enjoy!

    It's about time.

  8. I use to set prescribed fires for Texas Parks and Wildlife back in the day... One of which got a little to hot for my liking...

  9. can't do campfires anymore. . .I think hubby is relieved.

    The pics were great. . .

    ReadyToGoFullTimeRVing Blog