Fire on the Mountains (Redding CA)

 

“I look up to the mountains and hills, longing for God’s help. But then I realize that our true help and protection come only from the Lord, our Creator who made the heavens and the earth.”

Psalms 121:1-2 TPT

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As I write this, the smoke from the Carr fire is diminishing and life seems to be returning to normal here in Redding CA.  We drove the RV back yesterday after leaving town for respite in Sequim Washington when the fire was small and the temperatures were climbing.  While we were there the fire turned very ugly and has up to this date destroyed over 100,000 acres and 500 structures.  Bicycling around one neighborhood this morning it looked like World War II, with cars and homes burned and still smoldering.  We are very grateful to the Father for better weather conditions today, and for the hardworking firefighters who saved so many homes from destruction.

The previous weeks leading up to this disaster were busy with short travels and lots of bike riding to get out and enjoy the day before the sun was too hot.  Having our “family” over for dinner on Sunday evenings continues to be a highlight of our week.  

Nights have been cool and clear with the moon and planets in the night sky…

Still in the honeymoon phase with the electric bike and riding almost every day to explore new trails.  On Tuesdays and Thursdays the bike shop has a 7am trail ride.  This has been a great way to explore new areas with Garth (the owner) and Ed (helped Garth start the shop).  

On this day we rode the Oak Bottom Trail, a gorgeous trail built from an old water supply canal along the lake.  Just a week later this area is burned completely.  

We ordered Cindy an electric bike on Tuesday and then borrowed one of the shop’s bikes to ride until her’s arrives.  Nice to be out on the trails together… even met some other electric bike riders while we were out.

Wednesday the temperature was climbing above 110 so we decided to leave town for a short visit to the Sonoma Valley winemaking area.  Much cooler there (forgot to take warm clothes!)  Took the electric bikes and had a blast exploring new trails… and some wineries of course.  Stayed at an Air B&B in Kenwood which was a couple blocks away from the Santa Rosa fires that recently destroyed over 2,000 homes. 

Crazy destruction all around this area, but still lots of untouched beauty to be found. 

One of the things I love about CA are the many parks and trails that are open to everyone.

At Sugarloaf Ridge State Park it was strange to see two water towers side by side, one destroyed by fire, the other untouched…

We came back to Redding on Friday for the weekend, and then quickly decided to leave town again… just too hot and uncomfortable to enjoy being here long.  Sunday we went for a drive to Burney Falls (gorgeous) and rode a few trails there too.  Very crowded though due to the heat and summer weekend.  Monday we packed up the RV and headed for Sequim Washington where Garth had painted a picture of E-bike paradise… and was not too far off.  A beautiful city on the water across the sound from Victoria, with lots of paved bike trails, shops, restaurants, wine tasting rooms, and lavender farms… what more could you wish for? 

The drive up to Sequim was along highway 101 in Washington. One of the prettiest stretches of road I think I have ever driven… followed rivers, lakes and mountains the whole way. 

Friday and Saturday we slowly made our way back to Redding.  Not sure we would want to stay if the city was shrouded in smoke, but we were pleasantly surprised by the light smoke and cooler evenings.  Ben, Beth and about 8 of their friends all went camping near Fort Brag to get away from the smoke and heat.  Should be returning on Monday if the fire continues to get under control.

We are super excited this week to head to Brisbane Australia to see Emily and David (and our fur grandkids).  Will be there for about 3 weeks visiting and taking a short vacation to beaches on the Northeastern coast (Arlie beach).  Hope to also do some sailing while there.

Lots of recovery will be going on for some time here in Redding and the surrounding areas affected by the Carr Fire (#CarrFire).  So thankful for the firefighters and for the merciful weather conditions which made such a difference as well.  

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