Micro twister touches down in Willowbrook

a willow one22a willow two22

Terrifying. Destruction. Wall of hail, rain and wind.

It came over the Orofino ridge and hit the Willowbrook bowl with a vengeance Monday shortly before 4pm

It twisted out many coniferous trees including the main landmark at the mail boxes. The wind described as a wall of grey so that you could not see the sky or anything in front of you. Dozens of large trees down, no power, no phone, no water. Lots of rain fell but no sign of it today.

Fortis has security on site and will work on restoring power today. About five homes and out buildings struck with estimate of damages not available.a willow three22

Willowbrook power outage continues

Trees down on houses, roads, lines down……. Still no power or water 6:36 am

About 4pm Monday emergency crews in OK Falls and Willowbrook notified of power lines down on Green Lake Rd.

ODN notified of no power in the Secrest area as well but it was restored at 11:15 pm

Westbridge fire highlighted on SO map

bed time fire report

Red dots indicate fires being watched and worked on

Flames indicates large area, evacuation notice etc.


Last updated: Monday, June 29, 2015

Location: Zamora, near Westbridge, 11 km North of Rock Creek

Discovered: Sunday, June 28, 2015

Size: 26.0 hectares

Status: Active
• 0% contained

Evacuation Alert is in effect, affecting 10 people.

An evacuation alert has been put in place by the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary along with Emergency Management BC for three homes in the area.

Cause: Lightning Caused

Resources working on Monday
• 21 firefighters
• 2 helicopters
• 3 heavy equipment
• 1 airtankers

Hot day in Wenatchee

2nd wenatchee fire

credit: Spokesman.com

credit: Spokesman.com

Source King 5

Updates on the Sleepy Hollow Fire:

•24 homes destroyed, hundreds of residents evacuated
•Embers also sparked a fire that destroyed three warehouses in downtown Wenatchee
•Level 3 and 2 evacuations in place for many
•Chelan County Emergency Management issues emergency declaration calling fire a ‘disaster’

WENATCHEE, Wash. – Authorities say a wildfire fueled by high temperatures and strong winds has destroyed at least 24 homes in Chelan County. The fire has burned 4,000 acres or 6.25 square miles in less than a day.

Embers also caused a raging fire at cardboard recycling facility in downtown Wenatchee, which spread to two other nearby warehouses. All three businesses were total losses, according to the Washington State Patrol. A food processing business that was destroyed has been family-run for a century.

A shelter in place was lifted for residents living within a half mile south of the Blue Bird facility after an ammonia leak dissipated.

Chelan County Emergency Management issued an emergency declaration on Monday for the wildfire named the Sleepy Hollow Fire.

Lightning, fire, rain – and more

fire hester22fire hester two22

Fire crews from Oliver called to Tinhorn Creek with a report of a grass fire behind their vineyard.

Fire actually quite far up the mountainside – right above Hester Creek winery. Forestry crews will look after whatever remains when the rain stops.


10:10 AM PDT Monday 29 June 2015
Severe thunderstorm watch in effect for:

  • Central Okanagan – including Kelowna
  • North Okanagan – including Vernon
  • South Okanagan – including Penticton

Conditions are favourable for the development of severe thunderstorms that may be capable of producing strong wind gusts, large hail and heavy rain.

Risk of severe thunderstorms this afternoon and evening.

Conditions are favourable for the development of thunderstorms this afternoon and evening. Some of these thunderstorms may become severe. The main threat is a heavy downpour of 25mm/hour. Strong wind gusts and moderate hail are also possible.

Rural report with Laird Smith

Last week I wrote about the magnificent tree on the former Carleton MacNaughton property up McKinney way. I speculated that the tree was maybe 500 years old. Knowing how dry the area can be, I may have under estimated the age of the tree.

In the Edmonton Journal newspaper dated Wednesday June 24 2015, an article written by Bethany Lindsay and Tristin Hopper stated that a tree called the Elaho Giant, a Douglas Fir, had been saved from a wild fire. The tree’s age is estimated to be from 1000 years to 1300 years and is said to be the third largest Douglas Fir on record.

The circumference of the largest Douglas Fir in the world is 12 meters. The circumference of Carleton’s tree would be approximately 10 meters. I would think that would easily make the tree at least 1000 years of age.

On a different note, I’m reading a book called A Nature Lover In British Columbia which is written by HJ Parham ( H J ). It is a book that Wally once possessed, one of my sister’s then owned it and she gave it to me. It is a wonderfully delightful book which gives a view of how the South Okanagan was during the early 1900’s.

A note worthy story is about how H J traveled. Besides horseback and buggy, he also had a rowboat. In the spring of 1906, he rowed from Kelowna to Penticton and back on several different occasions. He also rowed from Penticton to Vaseau Lake where he lived, and made trips down to Osoyoos Lake. He rowed by himself as well as rowing with passengers and fellow rowers.

He mentioned starting one row boat trip from the Oliver bridge.
I remember riding the school bus when the wooden Oliver bridge was being replaced with fill. The river had been straightened and the bridge was no longer practical. Besides, the oxbows were being filled in to be used for other purposes. Wasn’t that what Carter’s Crater was, part of the oxbow?

H J described the area from McIntyre Creek to Vaseau Lake as being one large meadow. When you look at the area today the only thing that resembles a meadow is Thompson’s hay field. My, how land can change in a hundred years.

The area just north of McIntyre Creek at present is scrub pine, bunch grass, and something we mistakenly called sage brush. I’ve Googled for information on the identity of the scrubby bush but have come up empty handed. Perhaps the readers of this column could identify the bush for me?

I look forward to your answers.


Oliver accident ties up traffic

car wash accident322Photo by Dave Whalley

Similkameen Ave and Hwy 97 at 1:30 pm

No one seriously injured. Both vehicles sustained damage. Mini-van and SUV/trailer combo jackknifed.

Possible drowning being investigated

Osoyoos RCMP Media Release

Possible Drowning – Osoyoos Lake

On June 28th, 2015 at 1757 hours the Osoyoos RCMP received a report of a missing male on Osoyoos Lake. Occupants of a sail boat were flagged down by a female floating in distress in the middle of the lake north of the Osoyoos marina. The female advised she had been on a sea-doo with a male when the two fell. The sea-doo was drifting 50-100 feet away from the female. The female had not seen the male driver since they fell off. Early indication is that the male was not wearing a life preserver. An extensive search of the lake was conducted by police and assisted by many civilian boats. The search was suspended at sundown. Poor weather hampered early search efforts this morning however a current break in the weather has allowed the Osoyoos RCMP with the assistance of Oliver and Penticton Search and Rescue to recommence the search. The RCMP dive team is also assisting in the search. Missing is a 34 year old male resident of West Vancouver. Identification of the missing male is being withheld pending notification of next of kin.

Cpl. Jason Bayda
Osoyoos RCMP