Rain schmain.

Everyone knows that when the calendar tips in to fall around here, fire season enters a critical frame.  Even with last weeks rain, a little bit of wind, heat and a few days of sun negates the effect of the moisture.  So as the offshore flow ramps up, so does the fire danger.

For that reason, the National Weather Service has posted a red flag warnings from Wednesday evening Sept. 25 to Friday afternoon Sept. 27, above 1,000 feet for the north and east bay hills.  On the highest peaks, wind gusts are forecast to hit 45-55mph.  This is a lot like the conditions in early May that kicked off the north coast fire season early. A graphic puts it in simpler terms  Obviously, we all need to be vigilant.  For a primer, here is a story by Press Democrat Guy Kovner that touched on this subject just a week ago Sunday.

A photo that I shot to go along with Guy’s copy, shows scars on redwood trees from the Hanly fire that started in Calistoga, fanned by 70mph winds that roared through what is now Pepperwood Preserve and chomped furiously all the way to Santa Rosa in 1964.

Stay tuned.

In the fall of 1964, the Hanly Fire roared up the slopes of what is now the Pepperwood Preserve, scarring redwood trees as it blew through toward Santa Rosa. Preserve manager Michael Gillogly, at right, gives scale to the trees, Thursday Sept. 12, 2013. (Kent Porter / Press Democrat

-Kent Porter