Sep 19, 2012


The weather people are keeping their weather eyes on the Southern Oscillation Index, a number which tells us something about the distribution of heat in the Pacific Ocean between Australia and South America, and telling us to expect an El Nino year, one in which the summer is hot and dry.

Apparently it's been a wet winter, though I didn't notice or can't remember, and out there in the countryside undergrowth and grass has been busily growing as though there is, in fact, no tomorrow.

This leads to the necessity of a program of controlled burning out in the countryside, and sometimes nearerby, where cooler, smaller, fires are set and closely monitored in order to burn the combustible fuel at the base of forests or in the fields and paddocks and reduce the risk of major wildfires.

So from time to time we will see a pall of smoke rising over a distant hill, or sometimes a closer hill. And sometimes the fires do get out of control, such as happened a few weeks ago between The Gap and Ferny Grove where a controlled burn got some legs.

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