MORE than six weeks on from the Denmark fires and the effects of the scorching heat still rears its ugly head.
Driving through the 2150 burnt hectares, the land is still smouldering, with small fires popping up in the affected areas.
Despite this, the community is in good spirits, and talk of the devastating event has lessened, in particular over the past week.
Farmers have received the needed hay bale donations and BlazeAid has set up camp, helping out with fencing and assistance where needed.
In the right place at the right time, local farmer Kevin Hard has been helping co-ordinate the donations which came from RioTinto and others such as C&C Machinery.
Mr Hard luckily didn't lose any infrastructure during the fires, but some of his property was badly scorched.
He suggested the bales could be stored on one of his paddocks, rather than at the shire, making accessibility easier for all involved.
With few bales left, the donation has been well received.
"The hay from Rio Tinto has been very handy and I know there have been local farmers just east of Denmark who have given hay as well," Mr Hard said.
"Most people at this stage are content with what they've got, but I did hear that there's more if we need more."
For Mr Hard and farmers like him, the biggest challenge ahead is "getting the ground back".
For some time afterwards Mr Hard said the "peaty stuff" on the ground kept smouldering.
"The older paddocks were the worst, paddocks like the flats, they were ploughed up a couple of years ago and reseeded, that hasn't seem to be a problem, but it's here on this lighter country where the fibrous matter, it's built up over a period of time and it keeps burning," he said.
"You come along with a water hose and this ground is just bubbling, when you first come in at it, you could boil a kettle on it.
"It's just going to be a time thing, until we get some decent rain, and the grass germinates again and gets going."
The Shire of Denmark is urging people to keep vigilant about fire, as even though the worst of the February fire is behind them, it is reminding people that the fire season is not over.
"Our challenge is to keep it front and centre for people, we're still not out of the fire season, we are predicting that the fire season is going to continue through until May because it's been so dry," said Shire of Denmark chief executive officer David Schober.
While the veracity of these fires limited the ability to save some homes and structures, the plans implemented by the Shire ensured that it was managed in the best way possible.
Running extensive exercises for the past five years, Mr Schober said they were as prepared as they could have been.
"The training that you undertake puts you in a good position, we are probably the most heavily exercised local government because of the fire risk here," Mr Schober said.
"You kick straight into the mode that you practised, if we hadn't done the work over the last two to three years it wouldn't have gone level one, two, three all in the one day.
"There is no doubt, and DFES has said the same thing, if this event were to happen five or six years ago there is no way we would have been as prepared as we were."
Moving to level three fire quickly is an important process, at that level the State's resources become available to a region.
Which in this case meant the aircraft could be quickly deployed, making an instrumental difference.
"We were really pleased with the State's response, that they accepted the incident so quickly and escalated it to level three," he said.
"If we didn't have that outcome, it would have been a different result, there is no doubt.
"So in that sense we couldn't be more thankful from the support of the State and the systems they've now got in place."
Moving forward however the Shire is going to continue advocating for the upgrade of Albany airport.
Currently the largest water tanker is unable to land at the Albany airport because it doesn't support aircrafts of that size.
An upgrade will mean the bigger jets won't have to re-fuel in Busselton and can remain closer to the regions.
The Shire is also looking into the evacuation and return of residents, streamlining the process.
For the time being it is working as the connection between what the locals need and service providers.
"We are working with people to make sure they know what's available," Mr Schober said.
"You're not on your own, whether it's fencing, feed, pastoral improvement or revegetation, all of those services are there."
Mr Hard was also happy with the Shire response.
"I personally think the Shire did a great job in their response," he said.
"When it boils down, these things happen, when you buy a farm down here you realise that and you've got to take the responsibility that one day a fire might go through - that's the consequence.
"It's part of nature that one day there's going to be a fire, this won't be the last fire that's for sure, there will be plenty more of them, but all we can do is learn from it and try to prevent it."
BlazeAid sets up in Denmark
Help has arrived in the form of volunteer organisation BlazeAid, which set up in the recreation hall in Denmark last week.
With a line of caravans, and a convoy of trailers ready to go, BlazeAid, which is funded by donations, was well equipped to put up fencing or help wherever farmers needed it.
With 14 trailers already in WA and 10 more on their way from the Eastern States, the biggest hurdle now will be gathering volunteers to pitch in and help out.
Denmark camp co-ordinator Ed Bland is from Bridgetown and has experienced the fires first-hand.
"It just tore through," Mr Bland said.
"It's the worst I've ever been in, there was nothing you could do, you just had to let it go."
After four weeks working with farmers recovering from the Bridgetown fire, he relocated the team to Denmark.
"We're very grateful that they came here, I certainly felt that we were low on the scale in comparison to what's happened in other areas in basically the same time frame," said Shire of Denmark communication and engagement officer Courtney Walsh.
"It's brilliant that they've come and offered their support to the farmers, it would have been pretty easy to say oh no we need to prioritise our resources, but they still made time to fit us in which is fantastic."
Both Mr Bland and his wife Judy love being part of the crew, "helping communities get back together".
That spirit of community is deep in his veins, clearly driving Mr Bland in everything he does.
When he isn't volunteering for BlazeAid he is still helping the community as a volunteer firefighter.
Mr Bland and BlazeAid are calling out for volunteers to help with the recovery.
"Any able bodied person who is able to pitch in and help we will welcome them," he said.
"You don't need much time, whatever people feel they can contribute we will welcome them with open arms."
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