Written by Lyle Ahrens, Posted: Tue, August 7 2012 at 4:13 PM, Updated: Tue, August 7 2012 at 4:26 PM
Fire crews are mopping up tonight from a fire that blackened about two and a half acres just northwest of Klamath Falls.
Lightning from Sunday's storm hasn't been ruled out as a possible cause.
Dan Riblett of Klamath County Fire District #1 says smoke was first reported coming from the Ridgewater area just off of highway 140 shortly before noon...
"On scene, they had about a half acre to three-quarter acre fire burning in sagebrush and juniper, as you can see around us."
Riblett adds that the fire began in the Beattys Butte Drive area, and briefly threatened two homes. "We were able to stop the fire before it endangered any kind of structures - there are structures in the area."
Two helicopters were called in to assist ground crews with suppression efforts.
Investigators still aren't sure what sparked the fire...
Riblett notes that lightning from Sunday's storm is one possible cause. "The storm we had the other day had a lot of moisture with it. When that moisture starts drying out, there still could be a fire under the ground, and in the soils - and when the winds dry the vegetation out, the vegetation starts on fire. And we'll be looking at that as a possible cause."
There were no injuries as a result of the fire.
KOTI-TV NBC2 reporter Lyle Ahrens moved from Nebraska to Klamath Falls in the late 1970's. He instantly fell in love with the mountains, the trees and the rivers, and never once regretted the move.
Lyle's job history is quite colorful. He’s managed a pizza parlor; he’s been a bartender, and a “kiwifruit grader” at an organic orchard in New Zealand. A Klamath Falls radio station hired Lyle in the mid 90's as a news writer and commercial producer. In 2004, Lyle joined the KOTI/KOBI news operation.
Lyle notes with pride that he has a big responsibility presenting the Klamath Basin to a wide and varied audience. "The on-going water crisis has underscored the fact that the people and the issues in the Klamath Basin are every bit as diverse as the terrain. Winning and keeping the trust of the viewers, as well as the newsmakers, is something I strive for with each story".
When he's not busy reporting the news, Lyle enjoys astronomy, playing guitar, fixing old radios and listening to anything by Sheryl Crow.