#occupyburque | Occupy Albuquerque | PHOTOS VIDEO from protest | UPDATE 6

Update:  Monday, October 17th, 2011:

Occupy Albuquerque had a very successful protest on Saturday, October 15th, in solidarity with #ows and #globalchange.  Upon my arrival at the protest point, which was Wells-Fargo in Nob Hill on Central Ave, there were hundreds already gathered.  The crowd swelled to between 700-800 people and was a glorious site!  Every age, race, religion and socioeconomic background was present!  In the true Albuquerque Southwestern tradition, it was an Occupy Fiesta!  This video I filmed and created shows the phenomenon which occurred this day.  For photos of this day, please visit my photo site:  MotleyPhotos.net More…

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New photos of Los Alamos fires smoke July 1, 2011 Reply

Nearly 104,000 acres have been scorched as of this afternoon, July 1st, 2011. Containment is only 3%. Las Conchas Fire is now considered the largest in New Mexico history, and still growing. Santa Clara Pueblo is hard hit, and their vital watershed is not nothing but flames. Los Alamos National Labs have remained untouched – but considering the labs have been their since WWII… who knows what was buried in the canyons and mountains in decades past when radioactive waste disposal was not what it is today. After all… this is the birthplace of the A-Bomb which was dropped on Nagaski and Hiroshima….

Below are pictures I just took this evening from the north side of Albuquerque, approximately 60 miles as the crow flies to the fires.

Truly devastating.

Click on a picture below to enlarge, then continue to scroll through by clicking on the picture.

Update, new photos on Las Conchas Fire, NM; No firework ban in Albuquerque despite worst drought in history Reply

City will not ban fireworks due to fear of civil lawsuits

Apparently the city of Albuquerque will not ban fireworks due to a fear of possible civil lawsuits. How asinine is this? New Mexico is in the the worst drought in recorded history… and the city is worried about law suits?

How about this… when we lose numerous homes due to a careless firecracker, those homeowners who lost their homes should sue the city for NOT banning fireworks.

Since the city will not ban fireworks (is there money under the table here???)… then here is my personal plea to all… please, wait until next year. Wait until the monsoons have passed, and hopefully rehydrated the state…. then set your fireworks off.

I am not anti-fireworks… I grew up with a family that had annual firework extravaganzas every Fourth in our rural Indiana fields. Love them! But I favor keeping our Bosque, keeping our National Forests, and keeping our homes over fireworks any day.

The fireworks can wait.

Here is my little video pleading no fireworks. The footage of the Bosque here in Albuquerque I took today. Below the video is an update on the Las Conchas Fire, and new photos from Los Alamos National Lab’s photostream on Flickr.

Las Conchas Fire Update
For Immediate Release: June 30, 2011

Date Started: 1 p.m., 6/26/2011
Number of Personnel: Approximately 752 personnel including seven hotshot crews and 14 handcrews.
Location: Approximately 12 miles southwest of Los Alamos off NM 4 at mile marker 35
Fuels: Mixed Conifer, Ponderosa Pine. Fuel moisture is extremely low.
Cause: Unknown – under investigation
Equipment: Four dozers and 28 engines
Size: approximately 92,735 acres
Aircraft: Five helicopters
Percent Contained: 3%
Residences: 13 destroyed and 3 damaged
Commercial Property: 3 damaged
Other structures: 2 destroyed


Las Conchas Fire Burns More Than 6,000 acres of Santa Clara Pueblo Land – 6/30

Santa Clara Pueblo, NM – The Las Conchas Fire has charred more than 6,000 acres of the watershed of Santa Clara Pueblo and continues to destroy cultural sites, forest resources, plants and animals that the people of Santa Clara depend upon for their livelihood and culture.

“We are devastated to witness the destruction of our precious homeland,” said Governor Dasheno. “From time immemorial to this day our community has been stewards of this land, have fought to regain portions taken from us and have invested millions of dollars in restoring the forest and resources.”

Nevertheless, after two days of extreme fire behavior, the Las Conchas Fire entered Santa Clara Pueblo lands mid-day on June 29. In the last 24 hours the fire has exploded across the western third of the reservation. This includes the area known as “P’opii Khanu,” the headwaters of the creek, which the Pueblo regained in 2000 after 140 years of struggle.


Chopper engages in the battle to save Los Alamos Canyon

Fire scars Pajarito Ski Hill

Fire in the Jemez

Haze over the Jemez

Smoke floats over a canyon

Helicopter recon, Las Conchas Fire

Helicopter recon, Las Conchas Fire

LANL helicopter recon

Skycrane in action

Below:  Las Conchas Fire progression map June 20, 2011

Larger view of above map click here

Fires still raging in Arizona, approaching New Mexico: “Perfect Storm” brewing with increasing winds and heat Reply

(Reuters) – More than 1,000 firefighters converged on this village in the Gila National Forest on Saturday as a massive wildfire that scorched eastern Arizona moved to a quarter mile from the New Mexico border.

With the winds picking up, temperatures rising and humidity low, the National Weather Service issued a Red Flag Warning for this sparsely populated corner of the state, indicating grave fire danger.

“Everything is ripe for a perfect storm,” Fire Information Officer Sean Johnson told Reuters.

“There’s not enough hose and water to put out a fire in these conditions.”

Firefighters raced to set controlled fires, designed to deny the advancing wall of flames the fuel it needs, “so we can manage the fire instead of the fire managing us,” Johnson said.

The fire has forced some 10,000 people from their mountain homes and charred more than 600 square miles of mostly pine-studded forest land in Arizona.

Although the so-called Wallon Fire has not entered New Mexico yet, its smoke has hung ominously in the skies over some parts of the state for days.

On Saturday, the Albuquerque Isotopes minor league baseball club was forced to push up its game against the Nashville Sounds by three hours to get it in before an new wave of smoke rolled in from the southwest.

Weather forecasts call for wind gusts of up to 35 miles per hour to buffet the already hard-hit area, with low humidity adding to the already bone-dry conditions.

“We’ve had this scenario before in this fire,” Flory told Reuters. “We’re just going to have to do our best with the conditions in front of us.”

Fire officials said progress had been made against the monster blaze that has raged in and around the Apache Sitgreaves National Forest since May 29. As of early Saturday, the fire was 6 percent contained and more was expected to be announced later in the day.

The easing of high winds that had rapidly spread the flames for several days earlier this week had allowed a fleet of water-dropping helicopters to work to douse the blaze, and a DC-10 supertanker carrying payloads of fire retardant took to the air on Thursday.

Ground crews worked around the clock with bulldozers to cut buffer zones between the fire’s edge and populated areas and to set backfires designed to draw flames away from homes.

Flory said the helicopter crews, too, were taking part in backfire operations, dropping “aerial ignition” canisters into remote, hard-to-reach stretches of forest behind fire lines.

Their job was eased as the blaze, which ranks as Arizona’s second largest on record, began burning out of the heavy timber into areas with fewer trees, fire officials said.

The latest aerial infrared images of the fire showed it has consumed nearly 409,000 acres, or almost 639 square miles. The Rodeo-Chediski fire charged nearly 469,000 acres in 2002, making it the largest in Arizona history.

The Forest Service reports that the fire has destroyed 29 homes in eastern Arizona, including 22 homes in the town of Greer, a small mountain retreat of about 200 dwellings. Another five residences were damaged and 35 nonresidential buildings have been lost.

No serious injuries have been reported.

Fire crews have so far kept flames from encroaching on two larger nearby towns of Eager and Springerville, ordered fully evacuated on Wednesday.

The towns are home to roughly 8,000 permanent residents combined, accounting for most of those displaced in the White Mountains region, a popular vacation destination for Arizonans seeking to escape the summer heat.

Flory said an estimated 1,900 people already had been forced from their homes by the time Springerville and Eager were evacuated.

Springerville Mayor Eric Baca, 38, who has lived in the area his entire life, called the fire “a punch in the gut.”

“This is devastating,” he told Reuters by telephone. “This couldn’t have happened to a more pristine area. This is our lifeblood … and now a lot of it is gone.”


Source: Reuters
Photos by REUTERS/Joshua Lott

Beautiful yet eerie pictures taken of the red sun and smoke-filled skies in Albuquerque NM, from Arizona fires 1

For several days now, Albuquerque has been blanketed with a thick layer of smoke originating from the massive fires in Arizona.  The city has been on health alert, and hospitals have seen a jump in respiratory-related visits. The smell of burning wood is much like the smell of a campfire and has permeated our both sinuses and homes.  The ash is leaving a light layer both inside and out.  Normally, the visibility is literally as far as ones eyes can see – which is to the horizon depending upon the view.  For the past few days, the visibility has dropped to 3 miles and under.  The magnificent Sandia Mountains which border the east end of our city, have completely disappeared under the layer of smoke.

Amidst all the health problems arising from the smoke, the light filtering has created some magnificent photo opportunities.  Please remember that in all these pictures, there are no clouds in the sky – which is normal for Albuquerque.  All that you see is smoke…

The first picture was taken by me from my backyard tonight at approximately 7:15 PM.  The sun was not due to set until 8:20.  I did not use any filters, no special settings, nor was this touched up in Photoshop.  The red coloring is from the smoke layer filtering out certain color wavelengths.  Which is also the reason for the various colors in the rest of the images.  The video above was also taken at the same time, same place.

And here is a picture taken today, June 7th, 2011,  in Arizona of the smoke from the Wallow Fire…

Footage of BLOOD RED sun over Albuquerque NM due to smoke from AZ fires Reply

I have never seen such a red sun before when this high in the sky.  No filter was used.  This is the actual color tonight, Tues. June 7th 2011.  You can see the smoke in front of the sun when zoomed in.  These are not clouds – today was a cloudless day – just completely covered with smoke off and on all day.


Here is a still shot I took as well.

Albuquerque NM completely engulfed in smoke from the massive AZ fires 1

UPDATE:  JUNE 7, 2011

I have never seen such a red sun before when this high in the sky. No filter was used. This is the actual color tonight, Tues. June 7th 2011. You can see the smoke in front of the sun when zoomed in. These are not clouds – today was a cloudless day – just completely covered with smoke off and on all day.


Here is a still shot I took as well.


JUNE 6, 2011

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – That thick, smoky haze is going to be in New Mexico for a while and it has caused the Environmental Health Department to issue another health advisory.

The smoke from a massive wildfire in eastern Arizona, as well as periodic dust storms across New Mexico, could cause people to have difficulty breathing.

Officials said the elderly, infants, people who have asthma or heart disease and even healthy people may also be affected by the haze.

Officials with the national weather service many other parts of the state are experiencing high the haze much worse then in Albuquerque.

“If you think it’s going to be bad in Albuquerque go just 50 miles to the west and in some areas can just be really extreme,” Kerry Jones said. “So unfortunately the pattern is just not going to be working in our favor in the coming days.”

Haze levels which substantially compromise visibility warrant an Air Quality Health Advisory. San Juan Basin Health Department advises that individuals in our community, particular those identified above, take health precautions when they notice the following condition:

  • If visibility is less than 5 miles in your neighborhood due to a wildfire or controlled burn, smoke has reached levels that are potentially unhealthy.  ** CURRENTLY, VISIBILITY IS 3 MILES IN ABQ NM ***

Here is some footage I just took at 6:30 pm and 6:45 pm tonight: