July 17, 2014.
The 256,108 acre Carlton Complex Fire started on July 14, by lightning from a weather system that moved through the Methow Valley. The Carlton Complex started as four fires: the Stokes Fire, the Gold Hikes Fire, the French Creek Fire and the Cougar Flat fire. These fires grew into one larger fire. The fire grew dramatically on July 17. Hot weather and windy conditions pushed the fire over the ridge tops and into the town of Pateros, resulting in 357 homes turned into three inches of ash and destroying critical infrastructure, crops, and cattle.
It's now been four months since the devastation. These images are of the initial aftermath the first few weeks after the fire.
THank you, Volunteers!
Since the fire on July 17th, we have heard over and over again from people who have visited that this is the most underfunded disaster they have ever seen. Some of our community has had to relocate to other towns, some are living with family, some are traveling long distances from temporary residences to bring their children to school every day. There are many still living in substandard tents and trailers, just struggling to survive. There are some still using generators and don't have running water or electricity. Some are using 5 gallon buckets for toilets. There are also new homes already being built for those who did have insurance. Let's do what we can to bring restoration and hope to everyone who lost their home this past July.