May 26, 2008

Fire on the Mountain

As you may have heard, for the last few days large fires have been burning in the Santa Cruz mountains overlooking Adobe HQ.  Quite a few of our colleagues live in or over the hills, but fortunately no one on the Photoshop team has (as far as I know) had to evacuate.  Bryan Hughes didn’t sleep well on Thursday night, I know, with the fire half a mile from his house (shoes on, cats in hand).


I mention it because on my way to an air show yesterday, I snaked through the mountains via some back roads and was surprised to see a very large and imposing Chinook helicopter barreling towards our car, on its way to reload water from the pond right behind me.  I pulled over and popped off a few frames that may be of interest to other aviation nerds.  Included in the set is the swift, violent, helicopter-borne death of a white Jeep Cherokee.  (Yeah, it blowed up real goood!)  Plumes of smoke from the mountains are visible in a few of the shots.


As for other fire-related photography, I honestly can’t compete with things like this.

Posted by John Nack at 10:03 PM on May 26, 2008


  • David Zeller — 10:34 AM on May 27, 2008

    I missed something… why was the Jeep dropped?
    [“Because it was there.” :-) The gag was that it was parked in a fire lane, and the PA had paged the crowd beforehand asking that the owner of the Jeep move his or her vehicle. –J.]
    And boy, that’s a skinny helicopter!
    [Indeed; check it out. –J.]

  • Alton Marsh — 11:59 AM on May 27, 2008

    I’m surprised that so little a helicopter can lift so heavy a Jeep. Pure entertainment. At this point in my work day I needed to see something expensive destroyed. Thank you.

  • Wilhelm — 10:48 PM on May 27, 2008

    wow.. it’s pretty hard to tell the size of the k-max in those pictures. It’s a lot bigger than it looks :P

  • Victor Gavenda — 8:31 AM on May 28, 2008

    Very nice pix, John! But I wanted to let you know that, in your slideshow, every time the “loading” widget did its thing, it was surrounded by a tiny flock of white pixel-y artifacts. Maybe it’s ’cause I’m using the public beta of the Flash 10 Player.
    Anyway, other geek data: Dual 2-GHz G5, Mac OS X 10.4.11, Safari 3.1.

  • Jake Hawkes — 9:28 AM on May 29, 2008

    Chris Figenshau has the best wildfire portfolio you will likily ever see:

  • Nat Brown — 7:10 PM on June 02, 2008

    Your blog is my first stop for PS and graphics clicks. Now I find out you are an aviation nerd. It doesn’t get any better.
    I’m a pilot in a flying club with a bunch of folks. We own three airplanes. A few years back, one of our members put in an enormous number of hours keeping the planes maintained. To show our appreciation, the rest of us decided to give him a framed picture of our three airplanes. We really wanted to have them flying in formation.
    Unfortunately, we didn’t have enough experienced formation flyers to (safely) fly a real formation. I volunteered to get the three aircraft close to each other using PS.
    I was only six months into my transition from Elements to the “Real thing.” I was flattered, therefore, when one of our guys who did not know the image was out of PS, took a look at the result and criticized us for having the aircraft too close during the flight.

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