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Forest Fire - on Ironman Canada Course!
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Highway 97 between Okanagan Falls and Oliver closed because of a forest fire. This is on the bike course for Ironman Canada which is this Sunday. See the following (from CBC News):



PENTICTON, B.C. - A new forest fire has sprung up south of Penticton between Okanagan Falls and Oliver knocking out power in the area.

The fire, which already covers 50 hectares, has also closed Hwy 97.

Air tankers and helicopters have been called in to fight the flames. Ground crews and heavy equipment have also been dispatched to the scene.

Penticton emergency centre spokesperson Joan Doller says the fire is affecting services in several Okanagan communities.

"Phone lines are also down, and Naramata which is where I live is without power as well. You know there are lots of lines down, and we could be in for a huge problem."

She says Naramata has issued a boil-water advisory until the power is restored.

There's no word on what effect the power outage will have on Sunday's scheduled Ironman Triathlon.





Pain is temporary. Pride is forever.
Last edited by: SAMOK: Aug 22, 03 20:12
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Re: Forest Fire - on Ironman Canada Course! [SAMOK] [ In reply to ]
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Now I've got two reasons to avoid IM Canada. The first is that my ex wife lives close to Penticton.
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forest fire is worse. "if IMNA folks pull off IMC this year it will be a miracle" [ In reply to ]
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Someone on Gordo's forum said that the forest fire is getting much worse:

It's much worse than that. That fire has reached over 250 hectares and spreading fast. Mclean Creek Road (among other areas) is on evacuation alert. There is NO CHANCE of any bike or run along Skaha lake towards OK Falls. Power in Penticton is fragile, cell phone lines are (were?) down as well. If the IMNA folks pull off IMC this year it will be a miracle!





Pain is temporary. Pride is forever.
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Re: forest fire is worse. "if IMNA folks pull off IMC this year it will be a miracle" [SAMOK] [ In reply to ]
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Latest update from the Ironman.ca site is that the race will go ahead with a modified swim and run course - they are notably silent about the bike course. Here's hoping - I think we all know people who will be devastated if the race gets called off. Also, people in that area could use a distraction from the constant worry from the fires.


TonyG

What is Enoch Root?
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Re: forest fire is worse. "if IMNA folks pull off IMC this year it will be a miracle" [TonyG] [ In reply to ]
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I just spoke with my friend paul Riegle via e-ail and he said conditions were "pretty bad" and there was substantial smoke. I remember flying into Kelowna in 1999 and seeing a huge forest fire out the window of the aircraft then. It was a incredible and terrifying spectacle. Aerial tankers were landing in Lake Okanagan to refill for water-bombing runs. It was something to see. Based on the tone of Paul's last message it sounds pretty iffy as to whether the race will be feasible. The big thing is the situtaion seems to be changing rapidly. Anyone know what the latest is?

Tom Demerly
The Tri Shop.com
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Re: forest fire is worse. "if IMNA folks pull off IMC this year it will be a miracle" [Tom Demerly] [ In reply to ]
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there was a thread a few days ago about who will win at IMC...I don't know if the race will be on, but we should pray for these guys putting their lives on the line to fight the fire...
whether the race is on or not, these guys are the champs!
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Re: forest fire is worse. "if IMNA folks pull off IMC this year it will be a miracle" [Francois] [ In reply to ]
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Excellent point. That is incredibly dangerous and amazingly grueling. Do they still have Smoke Jumpers?

Tom Demerly
The Tri Shop.com
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Re: forest fire is worse. "if IMNA folks pull off IMC this year it will be a miracle" [Tom Demerly] [ In reply to ]
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Smoke jumpers are unique to the US. We don't have any in Canada. Maybe they are helping us though. Did you know that these guys (SJ) are carrying 110 pounds on their back when trekking out. Great shape.

Richard


Richard

"You're only young once, but you can be immature forever" - Larry Andersen
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Re: forest fire is worse. "if IMNA folks pull off IMC this year it will be a miracle" [rferron] [ In reply to ]
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Update from my buddy Paul as of a few minutes ago:

Tom
I think I will pass on next year also.
Sat. afternoon and the race as of now is on. But big changes 2 loops on swim and 3 loops on run in town passes Spanish Villa 6
times. As of late last nite the race was off due to road closures on bike course but those roads are now open but fire not under
control but moving in another direction. Kelowna is a mess they have reopened airport there but a different and huge fire is now
moving toward them 30,000 evac'ed over nite.
I hope the water is calm, this morning 2 foot rollers it sucked big time. Well, will send a post race update next week. We are going
to Yellowstone when this show is over.
Everyone says Hi.

Tom Demerly
The Tri Shop.com
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Re: Forest Fire - on Ironman Canada Course! [SAMOK] [ In reply to ]
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Goto the ironman live website...

http://liveupdate.ironmanlive.com/mult.php?rid=209&rand=6744583


it posted the following today...

Course Changes announced at Athlete meeting



We'd heard they would likely be coming, so there weren't too many surprises at the athlete meeting when Ironman North America President Graham Fraser told the competitors that the course would be changed.

The swim will be a two-loop affair, which will be easier to monitor with the reduced number of regular volunteers who are typically in this section.

Normally there are 28 firemen out in the water ... tomorrow it looks like only five will be available.

The new swim will go out parallel to the shore towards the "Sycamous" -- a ship that is at the end of the beach strip here in Penticton. Running counterclockwise, the course will start out in the water. The athletes will come back towards the swim finish, but won't get out of the water to start the second loop.

The bike course remains unchanged as of right now.

The run course has been changed ... it will be a three loop course, with two out and back sections.

There are more details on the new run course posted in the run tab.
Last edited by: lajollaseal: Aug 23, 03 16:30
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Re: Forest Fire - on Ironman Canada Course! [lajollaseal] [ In reply to ]
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The sky today was the clearest since I arrived, essentialy no smoke. also, the afternoon winds which have been howling were essentially non-existent today. If tomorrow is like today (along the entire course) should be a great race with fast times.

The run course changes will be much more spectator friendly. If they work out, I hope they are permanent.

Frank

--------------
Frank,
An original Ironman and the Inventor of PowerCranks
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Re: help for Kelowna / Penticton area [ In reply to ]
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The firefighters are awesome - some really moving stories today about firefighters losing their own homes to flames while working to save the homes of others.

The Red Cross is also doing great work in the area - I know many people on this forum have a special feeling for that corner of the world - if you feel the urge here is a link to a rather painless online donation process for the Red Cross: https://secure.csfm.com/redcross/


TonyG

What is Enoch Root?
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