Controlled burn got a tad out of control

Jeff in TXJeff in TX Senior MemberPosts: 1,197 Senior Member
As some may know I've been fighting the cattails in my pond. I was finally able to kill 98% of them. The problem was so they're so thick and dense it would take years for them to breakdown and decompose. My local Texas land and game biologist said to burn them if we could get the right conditions. Sunday afternoon we had those perfect conditions. Winds 5 to 7 mph straight out of the east. We had four of us to keep the fire under control. The day prior to the burn I cut grasses down as low as I could get them which was about 2".

We set the smaller section by the pier on fire. The winds kept pushing the fire and the entire section took 6 to 7 minutes to burn and burn out. It was about 20 yards long. We were able to keep the fire from burning to the woods with our bucket patrol. Everyone said well that was easy so we went to the other side set up. We dumped water in line for the 40 yards of cattails on the grass where we didn't want the fire to cross. We made sure the grasses were very wet like we had on the other side. We lit the fire and first 20 yards burned perfectly just like the first section. As the fire crossed the drainage ditch the winds shifted and blew a big gust from the south. The fire spread rapidly through the second section and up the drainage ditch quickly. Within two minutes it was spreading beyond our burn point and became more than we could control. We called 911 and had our local volunteer fire department onsite in about 15 min. During the time we were waiting I jumped on the tractor and using the bucket on the front in cut a fire break on 4-wheeler trail to keep the fire from crossing into the tall grasses which would have been catastrophic. By the time the FD got here I had 85% of contained and cutoff. It took them a five minutes to finish off the drainage ditch area where I couldn't get the tractor and another few minutes to put out the hot spots that were smoking.

We had called the FD prior to the burn to let them know what and when we were burning and asked if they wanted to be onsite with us. The said no, just to call if it gets out of hand. We explained our game plan and they said it sounded like we were on top of it and things should go well. Most of the folks from the FD were from our church, life in small town but nice to see friends coming to help out. When it was all said and done I told them it was amazing how quickly it can spread. To which the fire chief said everyone says that. Had it not been for the wind shift and big gust we would have been fine, but my respect for fire and controlled burns got a lot more healthy after this one. Still have some cattails that were in the southern area of the burn that didn't burn which I'll take care of in a couple weeks. Good thing is there's nothing left to catch fire now that the area around the pond burned and there's no fuel. All told the burn covered about an acre probably a bit less but could have been a lot worse.

fire.jpg
Distance is not an issue, but the wind can make it interesting!

John 3: 1-21
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Replies

  • cpjcpj Senior Member Posts: 37,107 Senior Member
    That's odd.
    You're from Texas and call a pond a pond.
    "I'm here for the guns, hunting, and skirt wearing men."
    Zee
  • FisheadgibFisheadgib Senior Member Posts: 5,050 Senior Member
    cpj wrote: »
    That's odd.
    You're from Texas and call a pond a pond.

    I'm sure that he meant to say tank but said pond so the rest of could follow along.:jester:
    snake284 wrote: »
    For my point of view, cpj is a lot like me
    .
  • Jeff in TXJeff in TX Senior Member Posts: 1,197 Senior Member
    cpj wrote: »
    That's odd.
    You're from Texas and call a pond a pond.

    It's a tank but unless you're from the Texas or South West I get more what's a tank. So online I just go with pond!
    Distance is not an issue, but the wind can make it interesting!

    John 3: 1-21
  • bullsi1911bullsi1911 Moderator Posts: 9,078 Senior Member
    cpj wrote: »
    That's odd.
    You're from Texas and call a pond a pond.

    you know that there is an actual difference between a "tank" and a pond, right? A "tank" is a stock tank- in other words, and artificial small reservoir of water that is made and designed around keeping your livestock from dying from dehydration. It is often fed by a windmill, but it can also be fed from seasonal streams and runoff. Ponds are the same thing, just not built to be for watering stock. The difference is vital in that a "tank" is likely to be full of cow, sheep or goat poop. Not the best place to get drinking water, swimming, eating fish from, etc...
    To make something simple is a thousand times more difficult than to make something complex.
    -Mikhail Kalashnikov
  • cpjcpj Senior Member Posts: 37,107 Senior Member
    bullsi1911 wrote: »
    you know that there is an actual difference between a "tank" and a pond, right? A "tank" is a stock tank- in other words, and artificial small reservoir of water that is made and designed around keeping your livestock from dying from dehydration. It is often fed by a windmill, but it can also be fed from seasonal streams and runoff. Ponds are the same thing, just not built to be for watering stock. The difference is vital in that a "tank" is likely to be full of cow, sheep or goat poop. Not the best place to get drinking water, swimming, eating fish from, etc...
    Only in Texas.
    In the real world, a pond is a pond is a pond.


    These are stock tanks.
    https://www.tractorsupply.com/tsc/search/stock%20tanks/livestock?cm_mmc%3DSEM-_-Google-_-Agriculture-_-StockTanksExtAd&gclid=CJuAqJKUoNYCFQWAaQod_4UJDg
    "I'm here for the guns, hunting, and skirt wearing men."
    Zee
  • bullsi1911bullsi1911 Moderator Posts: 9,078 Senior Member
    cpj wrote: »


    As with most things- everyone else outside of Texas is wrong.

    And yes, those are ALSO tanks.
    To make something simple is a thousand times more difficult than to make something complex.
    -Mikhail Kalashnikov
  • cpjcpj Senior Member Posts: 37,107 Senior Member
    You can always tell a Texan, you just can't tell him much.
    "I'm here for the guns, hunting, and skirt wearing men."
    Zee
  • CHIRO1989CHIRO1989 Senior Member Posts: 9,486 Senior Member
    Glad you got ahead of it Jeff, bet the boys got an education:yikes:.
    I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that they turn away from their ways and live. Eze 33:11
  • JerryBobCoJerryBobCo Senior Member Posts: 6,040 Senior Member
    bullsi1911 wrote: »
    you know that there is an actual difference between a "tank" and a pond, right? A "tank" is a stock tank- in other words, and artificial small reservoir of water that is made and designed around keeping your livestock from dying from dehydration. It is often fed by a windmill, but it can also be fed from seasonal streams and runoff. Ponds are the same thing, just not built to be for watering stock. The difference is vital in that a "tank" is likely to be full of cow, sheep or goat poop. Not the best place to get drinking water, swimming, eating fish from, etc...

    When I was a kid, both of my grandparents lived on farms near Abilene, Tx. They got ALL of their drinking water from stock tanks, creeks or, if lucky, a cistern filled with rain water. I grew up drinking that water whenever I went for a visit, and never once got sick. I suspect if I drank the same water now, though, I'd be puking my guts up in short order.

    I think it has to do with the way that water is treated. There's enough chemicals in the so-called safe water to kill the good bacteria that we had in our digestive system back then. It was that good bacteria that kept the bad stuff in check. At least that's what I think.

    And I still have absolutely no reservations about eating fish caught from a stock tank.
    Jerry

    Gun control laws make about as much sense as taking ex-lax to cure a cough.
  • Jeff in TXJeff in TX Senior Member Posts: 1,197 Senior Member
    CHIRO1989 wrote: »
    Glad you got ahead of it Jeff, bet the boys got an education:yikes:.

    We were all lucky and we all learned a valuable lesson and bigger respect for fire and mother nature. At least I thought it through In case something happened and having the tractor in place to cut the fire break.

    Two positives come out of it. No more fuel/grasses and such to catch fire on the next burn in a couple of weeks. Going to disk the area this evening and plant a.wheat mixture and some turnips and turn it into a food plot.
    Distance is not an issue, but the wind can make it interesting!

    John 3: 1-21
  • snake284snake284 Senior Member Posts: 20,866 Senior Member
    Jeff in TX wrote: »
    As some may know I've been fighting the cattails in my pond. I was finally able to kill 98% of them. The problem was so they're so thick and dense it would take years for them to breakdown and decompose. My local Texas land and game biologist said to burn them if we could get the right conditions. Sunday afternoon we had those perfect conditions. Winds 5 to 7 mph straight out of the east. We had four of us to keep the fire under control. The day prior to the burn I cut grasses down as low as I could get them which was about 2".

    We set the smaller section by the pier on fire. The winds kept pushing the fire and the entire section took 6 to 7 minutes to burn and burn out. It was about 20 yards long. We were able to keep the fire from burning to the woods with our bucket patrol. Everyone said well that was easy so we went to the other side set up. We dumped water in line for the 40 yards of cattails on the grass where we didn't want the fire to cross. We made sure the grasses were very wet like we had on the other side. We lit the fire and first 20 yards burned perfectly just like the first section. As the fire crossed the drainage ditch the winds shifted and blew a big gust from the south. The fire spread rapidly through the second section and up the drainage ditch quickly. Within two minutes it was spreading beyond our burn point and became more than we could control. We called 911 and had our local volunteer fire department onsite in about 15 min. During the time we were waiting I jumped on the tractor and using the bucket on the front in cut a fire break on 4-wheeler trail to keep the fire from crossing into the tall grasses which would have been catastrophic. By the time the FD got here I had 85% of contained and cutoff. It took them a five minutes to finish off the drainage ditch area where I couldn't get the tractor and another few minutes to put out the hot spots that were smoking.

    We had called the FD prior to the burn to let them know what and when we were burning and asked if they wanted to be onsite with us. The said no, just to call if it gets out of hand. We explained our game plan and they said it sounded like we were on top of it and things should go well. Most of the folks from the FD were from our church, life in small town but nice to see friends coming to help out. When it was all said and done I told them it was amazing how quickly it can spread. To which the fire chief said everyone says that. Had it not been for the wind shift and big gust we would have been fine, but my respect for fire and controlled burns got a lot more healthy after this one. Still have some cattails that were in the southern area of the burn that didn't burn which I'll take care of in a couple weeks. Good thing is there's nothing left to catch fire now that the area around the pond burned and there's no fuel. All told the burn covered about an acre probably a bit less but could have been a lot worse.

    fire.jpg

    Did you burn that deer blind?
    Daddy, what's an enabler?
    Son that's somebody with nothing to do with his time but keep me in trouble with mom.
  • olesniperolesniper Senior Member Posts: 3,505 Senior Member
    cpj wrote: »

    Just lucky his cattails weren't along side a creek, crick, brook, channel, rivulet, tributary, or stream.
    Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
    I will fear no evil: For I carry a .308 and not a .270
  • Jeff in TXJeff in TX Senior Member Posts: 1,197 Senior Member
    snake284 wrote: »
    Did you burn that deer blind?

    Nope, but the single and double bipods that are up are both fine thank goodness. It did burn all the tall grass and cactus around and under them, now no worries about missing a snake that may be hidden in the grass. I did that one night pig hunting, I thanked him for his built in rattle detection system.
    Distance is not an issue, but the wind can make it interesting!

    John 3: 1-21
  • jbp-ohiojbp-ohio Senior Member Posts: 8,500 Senior Member
    olesniper wrote: »
    Just lucky his cattails weren't along side a creek, crick, brook, channel, rivulet, tributary, stream, or run.

    FIFY
    "The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not." Thomas Jefferson
  • orchidmanorchidman Senior Member Posts: 7,364 Senior Member
    bullsi1911 wrote: »
    As with most things- everyone else outside of Texas is wrong.

    And yes, those are ALSO tanks.

    You guys cant even agree on the 'murican. language. And you have already bastardized the English one........
    Still enjoying the trip of a lifetime and making the best of what I have.....
  • cpjcpj Senior Member Posts: 37,107 Senior Member
    orchidman wrote: »
    You guys cant even agree on the 'murican. language. And you have already bastardized the English one........

    Murcia has it figured out. It's the Texicans that don't understand.
    "I'm here for the guns, hunting, and skirt wearing men."
    Zee
  • JerryBobCoJerryBobCo Senior Member Posts: 6,040 Senior Member
    cpj wrote: »
    Murcia has it figured out. It's the Texicans that don't understand.

    We understand each other. That's enough.
    Jerry

    Gun control laws make about as much sense as taking ex-lax to cure a cough.
  • bisleybisley Senior Member Posts: 9,786 Senior Member
    cpj wrote: »
    Murcia has it figured out. It's the Texicans that don't understand.

    All of my family were Okies, until me, and they called anything they dug themselves a tank, unless it was on a creek or branch. Find some old-timers still alive anywhere on the plains, and they will likely do the same. And remember, probably about half of all Texans came here from Tennessee, at least until snake started inviting all the Yankees to move here. :tooth:
  • Jeff in TXJeff in TX Senior Member Posts: 1,197 Senior Member
    JerryBobCo wrote: »
    We understand each other. That's enough.

    What he said!:agree:
    Distance is not an issue, but the wind can make it interesting!

    John 3: 1-21
  • SIGgalSIGgal Senior Member Posts: 1,660 Senior Member
    JerryBobCo wrote: »
    We understand each other. That's enough.

    Well, I guess you have the upper hand on the deer now lol
    "Marriage is a hunting permit that allows you only one dear at a time"
  • tennmiketennmike Senior Member Posts: 21,925 Senior Member
    Beats all I ever did see. You burn the danged field and leave that wad of cattails in the corner of the pond untouched. I'm disappointed. :roll2: :tooth:
    Non Sibi Sed Patriage (Not for self, but country)



  • Diver43Diver43 Senior Member Posts: 7,477 Senior Member
    tennmike wrote: »
    Beats all I ever did see. You burn the danged field and leave that wad of cattails in the corner of the pond untouched. I'm disappointed. :roll2: :tooth:

    I was gonna make a smart butt comment about that but......
    Logistics cannot win a war, but its absence or inadequacy can cause defeat. FM100-5
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 19,076 Senior Member
    bullsi1911 wrote: »
    As with most things- everyone else outside of Texas is wrong.

    And yes, those are ALSO tanks.

    This.
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • SIGgalSIGgal Senior Member Posts: 1,660 Senior Member
    Where I come from, a pond is something you catch frogs and fish in, float on it and party around it. A tank is where poop goes via water and gravity and fish swim. Y'all have interesting terms :)
    "Marriage is a hunting permit that allows you only one dear at a time"
  • cpjcpj Senior Member Posts: 37,107 Senior Member
    bisley wrote: »
    All of my family were Okies,

    Anything said after that statement is irrelevant.
    "I'm here for the guns, hunting, and skirt wearing men."
    Zee
  • VarmintmistVarmintmist Senior Member Posts: 6,255 Senior Member
    For future reference, a 2 gallon spray can, like a garden sprayer, can keep a lot of fire in check.
    It's boring, and your lack of creativity knows no bounds.
  • Jeff in TXJeff in TX Senior Member Posts: 1,197 Senior Member
    tennmike wrote: »
    Beats all I ever did see. You burn the danged field and leave that wad of cattails in the corner of the pond untouched. I'm disappointed. :roll2: :tooth:

    Yep, when the winds shifted from the south it blew towards the field leaving the huge dense area of cattails standing. I'll burn those in a couple of weeks when I get some winds from the north.
    Distance is not an issue, but the wind can make it interesting!

    John 3: 1-21
  • Jeff in TXJeff in TX Senior Member Posts: 1,197 Senior Member
    SIGgal wrote: »
    Where I come from, a pond is something you catch frogs and fish in, float on it and party around it. A tank is where poop goes via water and gravity and fish swim. Y'all have interesting terms :)

    Gotta love it, from New Jersey and say's y'all! Come on down Texas way!
    Distance is not an issue, but the wind can make it interesting!

    John 3: 1-21
  • Diver43Diver43 Senior Member Posts: 7,477 Senior Member
    Jeff in TX wrote: »
    Yep, when the winds shifted from the south it blew towards the field leaving the huge dense area of cattails standing. I'll burn those in a couple of weeks when I get some winds from the north.

    Might as well finish the burn now while there is no fuel for it to spread
    Logistics cannot win a war, but its absence or inadequacy can cause defeat. FM100-5
  • JayhawkerJayhawker Moderator Posts: 13,655 Senior Member
    When we burned pastures in KS we used 4 wheelers with 30 gallon water tanks, electric pumps and sprayers to keep things in check after we cut our fire lines...a couple of guys can move around pretty quickly and tend to trouble spots...that whole bucket brigade thing sounds like a recipe for disaster...those range fires get to moving pretty fast...
    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"
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