Monday, July 16, 2012

Manual Fire Finding

It was a bit of a drive that morning, and it was hot before the sun came up.

Our friend the warden brought us up to the fire tower atop the Pitcher Mountain.  It was a short hike, but right for young children.  Inside, they had a giant sighting compass standing on the center of the tower floor.

Still works.  Elegant in its simplicity.  Line the cross-hairs and adjust the elevation on the brass.  Mark your sighting, look up the reading in the file of 3x5 cards arranged by increments of 10 degrees and get the details about what you see (all hand-written).  Not subject to power outages, and comes complete with millions of blueberry bushes immediately below.

At the bottom of the mountain, there is a money box for donations.  "$1 per quart" of blueberries.  I optimistically put in $5 as we began.  As it turned out, I overpaid by $4.75.


  1. Few years ago my brother and Dad paid $90 to rent an old fire tower in north/central Idaho for a night. Took a day by ATV to get there and from 150 up you could see no signs of other humans anywhere.
    Loved it.

  2. Even if you did... I'm sure the money goes to something important.


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