April 17, 2005 – Prairie Burn

I had a welcome diversion from tree planting this late afternoon to help at a prairie burn. Yesterday we were wet because of rain today because of sweat – it was in the 80’s. I was ready to stop looking at trees and mulch for a while! Although I’m glad to report all trees are in the ground and only eight more need mulch. I’m going to hope for a lot of rain this week!

We went to Two Friends Farm and our burnmeister and host Steven explains the game plan. They had already made some small burns around the woodland, house, and road and were ready for the big burn today.

We all pause for a while to admire the flamethrower before lighting the fire.
We gather up the backpack water tanks and flappers to control the burn at the edges and against the wind.

water tank

Steven ignites the maiden potion of the fire, a backburn, one that moves slowly AGAINST the wind.
Once it gets going, here is the small, controlled backburn in process.

Now the fun starts when the burnmeister lights the headfire – the fire that will take off with the wind and meet up with the backfire and harmlessly extinguish.

Here’s more pictures of the headfire gaining steam.
Remember, this is a job for professionals – do not try this at home!