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Residents shocked by fire damage to Deukmejian Wilderness Park

The burned, crumbling hillsides of Deukmejian Wilderness Park were an alien sight to visitors who got an inside look over the weekend at what authorities fear is a disaster waiting to happen.

Canyons once covered in green chaparral were blackened and bare, sprinkled with gray ash, the product of backfires lit to contain the persistent Station fire that tore through a quarter of the Angeles National Forest last month.

Charred branches reached out of the dry earth like scarred fingers.

Pieces of broken rock, shattered by the fire’s high heat, lay scattered across the landscape.

“This is like a scene out of World War II,” said La Crescenta resident Les Soltes, who had grown accustomed to appreciating the green hillsides above his home before the fire.

Read the full story here.

-- Zain Shauk in Glendale

Photo: Area residents trudge through the now-alien landscape of Deukmejian Wilderness Park. Credit: Raul Roa / Glendale News-Press

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Comments () | Archives (5)

This was so unacceptable. This beautiful wilderness was "backburned" to save rich people's homes because the whole fire was mismanaged. Yet working class people living in Tujunga Canyon were left homeless.

When I went up to the Park a few weeks ago, a firefighter made some sarcastic remark so I and others could overhear. "Well, no one's going to be hiking in this park anytime soon. " Yes, thanks to our "heroes." Not. I really don't think firefighters should be put on a pedestal. Mistakes were made and little respect was shown for nature of those making under a certain amount of money.

I am still shoked at the damage Duekmejian did to california when he was governor! lol

1. Stuff burns. In 20 years, a fraction of time, it regrows, its been happening over centuries.
2. Look at the patch of the "fire fighter" you claim said that (first I don't believe it). There are federal, state, county and city fire fighters, each with differing skills, tactics and goals. So don't group them all into one position.
3. They do not put themselves on pedestals but are proud of the job they do, as should you be about your job.
4. "Heroes"? Maybe not, since it is their job to be first responders. Brave? Absolutely, and they will not question their duty. Might I remind you that two died in service to all of us. How would their family and loved ones feel about your complaining post? So save your bitterness about your Big Tujunga Canyon home. Move on, second guessing is easy. Making up stuff is even easier.

The hills have always been burning and they always will. It's "natural". If you're foolish enough to build your house in a canyon full of brush and trees, you need to live with the consequences.

At least come next summer the whole area will have recovered and brand new growth will have been able to gain a foothold, Forest fires are not a bad thing in themselves as they enable new growth to sprout and possibly for a few years there wont be any fires.


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