Funny River Fire Darkens Sky Over Kenai Peninsula

"It's pretty scary. This is a first for me, I've been here 15 years but haven't seen anything like this."

This is a line we are hearing over and over again from across the nation and it should be taken seriously. Fire conditions and behavior are rapidly changing and need to be addressed with the same kind of swiftness.

From the Source: 

"The Funny River Fire has grown to more than 20,000 acres, according to a Wednesday morning update from the Alaska Interagency Coordination Center.

Fire came close to but did not cross Funny River Road on the north flank of the fire overnight thanks to fire crews, air support and an existing fuel break, according to the Alaska Interagency Incident Management Team’s Facebook page. 

Firefighters are focusing on securing the north flank on Funny River and the southwest corner to safeguard the community of Kasilof, the update says. Significant smoke is blanketing Soldotna...

At the Kasilof Mercantile Store near milepost 109 on the Sterling Highway, Nancy Russell said it was bright and sunny as she drove to work at 6 a.m. Tuesday. But by 11 a.m., the sky started to cloud with smoke, and it was dark by 2 p.m., she said.

Customers brought in 'horrible' photos of the smoke throughout the day, Russell said. She said people were picking up their children from school early and taking animals to safety.

'People are on very high alert,' she said. 'It's pretty scary. This is a first for me, I've been here 15 years but haven't seen anything like this.'"

  Above: "The Funny River wildfire near Soldotna more than doubled in size on Tuesday, May 20, 2014, growing to nearly 7,000 acres in dry, windy conditions and low humidity, fire officials said." Credit: Bill Roth/Anchorage Daily News

Above: "The Funny River wildfire near Soldotna more than doubled in size on Tuesday, May 20, 2014, growing to nearly 7,000 acres in dry, windy conditions and low humidity, fire officials said." Credit: Bill Roth/Anchorage Daily News