August 20th Update From Geoff Bleakley, Formerly Of Copper Valley, On Maui Fires

 Geoff Bleakley Was An NPS Copper Valley Historian  UPDATE, AUGUST 20TH, 2023: Olinda and Piiholo Roads connect at the top. We live about a ...

 Geoff Bleakley Was An NPS Copper Valley Historian 


UPDATE, AUGUST 20TH, 2023:

Olinda and Piiholo Roads connect at the top. We live about a third of the way up Piiholo. This whole area (the foothills of Haleakala) was ranchland back in the day and is still quite rural. The surrounding ranch land is covered in dry grass, which burns like gasoline. There's a relatively small fire up at the top where the two roads join, perhaps 6 or 7 miles above us. It's been manned for several days but it appears that the combined efforts of the firefighters and helicopter water drops have kept it from expanding significantly. We are, however, experiencing fairly high winds today, due to the fairly close proximity of a tropical storm to the south. The hits just keep on coming! Thanks for reaching out.  Geoff

Geoff Bleakley, who worked at Wrangell-St. Elias Park for 17 years from 1994 to 2012, now lives in Makawao, in the highlands of Maui. While in the Copper Valley, he was on the board of directors of the Alaska Historical Society. 

Makawao is the site of a massive stone church which is on both the U.S. National Register of Historic Places and the Hawaii Register of Historic Places. 

Here's what Geoff told the Country Journal about the fire of August, 2023: 

A bit scary last night when the fire started moving from Kula down Piiholo and Olinda Roads, where we live, but although we were ready to evacuate, we didn't have to. The fire was close enough to light up the sky — making us very nervous for a couple of hours, and didn't get much sleep! 

Our close friends owned a condo on the beach in Lahaina and had just purchased a second bigger one to replace the first. Both burned, the second before they even got moved in. 


 

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