Please say HELLO to Al Ford.
Walking back from the fire, I heard a hammer pounding...looked up and behold: Al Ford doing some repair work on his friend's motorcycle business building.
BALDWIN, FLORIDA CITY HALL on US 90.
A vintage home up for sale in BALDWIN.
Detour sign because of the forest fire a few miles North on US 301.
Please say HELLO to Andy Fisher, employee of a special response team helping control traffic trying to drive on the "closed" US 301.
I was allowed to walk the "closed" US 301.
Before daylight, I left SPIA parked at the WAFFLE HOUSE while I walked all the way to the fire on US 301 and back. It turned out to be a bit over 10 miles. I forgot to take along my water bottle belt or any food. Not realizing it was so far, I became parched from the smoke and thirsty.
Andy came to my rescue by sharing one of his cold bottles of Gatorade...thank you, Andy.
US 301 on my way to the fire.
Was very nice walking as there was little traffic...only fire fighting equipment speeding to and from the fire.
Passed by this Cement Plant...was beginning to look like a day of few photographs.
The fire from about 1/4 mile away. I was beginning to inhale smoke
but, I kept on until I was about 1/8 mile from the smoke.
Looking carefully, the rotating red light on a vehicle can be seen in the smoke.
Five times, a Fire Department Water Truck passed by, going to and returning from the fire.
Upon reaching US 90 on my return walk, I came across one of the trucks. The Fireman was filling the truck tank with water from a fire hydrant in a small mall. I stopped to chat for a moment:
The tank truck holds 2,500 gallons of water. Today, there were only two tank trucks working as the fire was essentially out...only "mop up" to be done.
Returning to SPIA, I had to take a Detour around the fire. I came out onto US 301 again on the North side of the fire. I had walked 20 miles earlier, so I drove another 10 miles and parked SPIA once again along side the Highway. From there, I walked North, crossing under I-95 Interstate Freeway, continuing for another 2 miles.
Returning to SPIA I was stopped by the local Sheriff asking about my motor home...the very pleasant fellow was just checking that everything was OK.
Returning to SPIA, I drove 13 miles, crossing the Florida - Georgia border over the St Mary River, and on to the small town of KINGSLAND, GEORGIA, where we found a spot for SPIA to spend the night in the parking lot of the local grocery store...with the promise of "feee" coffee at 7:00 am in the morning.
After that free cuppa, I will walk back to the Florida - Georgia border, take a slow stroll through town, and continue North on US 17...the route we will be following for the next couple weeks.
I plan lots of side trips as we go along. We are in no hurry for the next 5 months as I don't want to enter the North in the midst of Winter.
If anyone has a special place for us to visit, now would be a good time to let me know so we can work it into our schedule...I am even considering diverting as far as ATLANTA - just a possibility.