Young Men & Fire

Young Men & Fire

eBook - 1992
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On August 5, 1949, a crew of fifteen Smokejumpers, the United States Forest Service's elite airborne firefighters, stepped into the sky above a remote forest fire in the Montana wilderness. Less than two hours after their jump, all but three of these men were dead or fatally burned. Exactly what happened in Mann Gulch that day has been obscured by years of grief and controversy. Now a master storyteller finally gives the Mann Gulch fire its due as tragedy. Norman Maclean.
first saw the Mann Gulch fire as it still burned in mid-August 1949, and even then he knew he would one day become a part of its story. Maclean spent the last fourteen years of his life studying and reliving the fire. Young Men and Fire is the long-awaited result, a story of Montana, of the ways of wildfires, firefighters, and fire scientists, and especially of a crew, young and proud, who "hadn't learned to count the odds and to sense they might owe the universe a.
tragedy." This tale is also Maclean's own, the story of a writer obsessed by a strange and human horror, unable to let the truth die with these young men, searching for the last - and lasting - word. Nature's violence collides with human fallibility in Young Men and Fire. The Smokejumpers in Mann Gulch are trapped by a "blowup," a deadly explosion of flame and wind rarely encountered and little understood at the time. Only seconds ahead of the approaching firestorm, the.
foreman, R. Wagner Dodge, throws himself into the ashes of an "escape fire " - and survives as his confused men run, their last moments obscured by smoke. The parents of the dead cry murder, charging that the foreman's fire killed their boys. Years later, Maclean returns to the scene with two of the survivors and pursues the mysteries that Mann Gulch has kept hidden since 1949. From the words of witnesses, the evidence of history, and the research of fire scientists,
Maclean at last assembles the scattered pieces of the Mann Gulch tragedy.
Publisher: Chicago : University of Chicago Press, 1992.
ISBN: 9780226501031
Branch Call Number: Downloadable Ebook
Characteristics: 1 online resource (viii, 301 p., 16 p. of plates) : ill., maps.
Additional Contributors: HCPLC OverDrive
Alternative Title: Young men and fire.


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Aug 24, 2018

Appropriate reading during a smoky wild fire season.

"The obstacle theory in its essential elements is not hard to understand. A wind strikes an obstacle, say a rocky promontory on a ridge, shears off it, and so starts to spin and soon goes into full circles behind the promontory. Any fire caught in these circles will throw off sparks and even burning branches which, if the conditions are right, will start spot fires, and these, when the conditions continue to be favorable, will swell into fire swirls, and when you get caught between them and the main fire you will be as lucky as Jansson if you regain consciousness in time to vomit. All this is easy to visualize if you like to walk by moving waters and note what happens in a stream when it strikes a half-submerge rock or small logjam. The stream shears off it, and the good fishing is where the eddies form on the rear flanks of the obstacle and behind it."

Jun 27, 2015

Intriguing story about early forest-fire management in the Mountains of Montana. The specific event was a tragedy, ending in the loss of many young men. I think that it counts for something, when you pick up a book about an unknown subject and finish it with a better appreciation for something you knew nothing about.
Maclean, the author of "A River Runs Through It", tends to the poetic, but is a capable writer.


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