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The wind chimes played a softer song Tuesday at Rusty Wolf's place. On Monday, it was more like rock and roll.

It hit fast and hard. And it was just, wierd, said Wolf.

Wierd because of how fast the fire moved in winds that carried it like a blanket over these now-blackened hillsides.

You look out the back door, it's right there, said Wolf.

The problem along Navarre Coulee Road is that the fire is burning high up on both sides of the valley. It's already consumed hillsides to the south. Now firefighters worry it could jump the ridge to the north, endangering more homes down below.

Today Rusty's place he shares with his mom is still standing. And he's staying.

I've got help right here with the backhoe. I'm going to do what i can to protect the house, said Wolf, who's ready to dig in, not give in. The former marine is fixing up this old backhoe to dig his own fireline.

I'm going to rewire it and put a switch in and do it right.

Because life on the valley floor right now is surrounded by fire high and low. But Rusty and dozens more homeowners in harm's way are confident that with help from above and on the ground, this latest fire doesn't stand a chance. Just in case I want to be ready. Maybe I'm overcautious, I don't know. I'm that way, I want to be ready.

A fire briefing was planned for 7 p.m. Tuesday at the Chelan Fire District Seven Station.

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