Laurence and Claire Cowie were rejoicing even though nearly all of their property was burnt to black in Saturday's fire.
He enjoyed a cold beer on the verandah of the home they both saved when fire encircled their 50 hectares on the Murrumbidgee near Bredbo.
They had lost sheds and stables and a motorbike but the home remained.
"We are taking it as a win - not a great win, but a win," Mr Cowie told The Canberra Times.
The calmness after the fire doesn't convey the heroism of fighting it in thick smoke, with flames barreling around the property, driven in unpredictable gusts by a swirling hot wind.
Late on Saturday night, they didn't know how many cattle had survived. Those which weren't killed have no water because pipes and tanks were destroyed.
But they saved their pets and horses as well as the house in a frantic burst of activity where he zig-zagged across the property in his ute with its tank and pump, putting out spot fires.
The blaze had been so ferocious they had to make heart-breaking choices, leaving the stable - and his motorbike - to burn to save the house.
"We tried to be where we needed to be. Sometimes we succeeded and sometimes we didn't," Mr Cowie said.
"We had fires all round us."
We tried to be where we needed to be. Sometimes we succeeded and sometimes we didn't.Laurence Cowie
They first saw the flames on the crest of the hill overlooking their property just before six in the morning, as dawn broke.
But they hadn't woken on Saturday morning fearing their property was in the direct line because of Friday's forecast wind direction.
In the event, the wind went the wrong way and the fire jumped the Murrumbidgee, with the firefighting resources concentrated on the other side.
The wind's change of direction also wrong-footed others in the area.
At nearby Alpine Yabby farm near Bumbalong Road, James Murphy, his brother, two friends and his parents watched the fire coming from the Namadgi National Park.
"As the fire got closer we were at the dams and within seconds it was on us, and the wind that came was just horrific," Mr Murphy said.
"The wind and dust and smoke hit us so hard that we just had to get out of there."
Instead of sheltering in the dam, they jumped in their cars and escaped along Bumbalong Road to the highway. "It hit us from all angles, it just started spot fires all around us," Mr Murphy said.
"The wind was not our side, it came in with the fire. It was just aggressive it whipped up every bit of smoke and dust. We couldn't even see each other."
Mr Murphy thinks the hedges acted as a fire break to protect the house - but the wind threw the corrugated iron roof 100 metres.