Soberanes Fire, Day 37, 8/27/16

“All,

The IC from the latest team, from Alaska, would like to know if the Big Sur folks would be interested in a meeting to let them know what the continuing plan is.
It is the same strategy as they are doing now….

Would you mind sending out an email and posting the question to see if there is any interest?

It would be a quick informal meeting.

Thanks,

Martha

Martha Karstens
Chief”

******************

From Steve Harper:

“This comes directly from Tassajara. I am not giving the name of the person it came from, but can attest to it comes from the top:
“It has been very confusing. The man who gave us the “absolutely no help” message, had seemed very supportive when at Tassajara, and also seemed very uncomfortable as he was giving us that new message. The day after that no message, 2 safety officers (or something) came to ZMC from the FS and asked if we needed anything. Yesterday they came back with the woman who helps to assign crews and they looked at our request for help to cut line. She said she will do her best to get us a crew for 2 days, which would be a big help. One “problem” it appears is that we have done so much prep and spent so much on equipment that they think we don’t need anything. Maybe this is true compared to others. My feeling is that the main thing that would be helpful to us is to have even one or two more people who have actually fought fire there when the fire comes. We have great crew, but very inexperienced.

These are just my thoughts and should not be taken as true. We are trying to decide on our strategy and I or someone will include you as we know. Thank you so much for your support.”

Steve suggests emailing SoberanesFire2016@gmail.com to express your concerns.

John Chesnut map:

image

August 27, 2016

DAILY UPDATE

Fire Information Phone (831)204-0446
soberanesfire2016@gmail.com
http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/4888/
http://www.fire.ca.gov/current_incidents/incidentdetails/Index/1348

Incident: The Soberanes Fire was started by an Illegal campfire on the morning of July 22, 2016, in the Garrapta State Park. The fire is burning in areas of previous large fires including the Basin Complex in 2008 and the Marble-Cone Fire in 1977.
Location: Los Padres National Forest, Ventana Wilderness, Monterey County, CA
Agency Jurisdiction: CAL FIRE San Benito-Monterey Unit/Los Padres National Forest

Current Size: 91,543 acres (54,259 acres CA-LPF, 37,194 acres CAL FIRE)
Containment: 60% Cause: Illegal campfire Injuries: 1 fatality, 4 injuries
Structures Destroyed: 57 homes, 11 outbuildings Structures Threatened: 410
Current Resources: Crews: 22 Engines: 85 Helicopters: 12 Dozers: 19 Water Tenders: 14
Total Personnel: 1501

Incident Command: Alaska Interagency Incident Management Team, Tom Kurth Incident Commander. The incident is no longer in unified command with Cal Fire, many Cal Fire resources are still being utilized.

Fire Restrictions: Forest Order 05-07-16-15 Fire Use Restrictions – Level IV Fire Restrictions. This Order is effective from August 23, 2016, through the end of the official 2016 fire season.

Current Situation: Yesterday, a thick marine layer kept fire activity along the coastal area low. Weather stations positioned around the fire area continue to show significant differences in humidity between the lower and higher elevations. Interior portions of the fire continue to grow slowly. Similar fire behavior is expected today and no threats to fire containment lines are anticipated.

Additional structure protection and firing operation crews have arrived and are taking this time of slow fire growth to develop preparing for potential fire movement. Suppression line repair work continues on the northern perimeter of the fire.

Wilderness Tactics: To reduce the impacts associated with fire suppression activities in wilderness areas, fire managers and firefighting crews continue using Minimum Impact Suppression Tactics (MIST) as much as possible. The steep, rugged terrain of the Ventana Wilderness is inherently treacherous to firefighters. Most direct fireline is being constructed near the perimeter in areas that have been pretreated and supported by aircraft. The inaccessibility into the Ventana Wilderness along much of the fire’s east side continually requires patience, as well as slow and steady hard work from the crews, as they look for options to construct direct line.

US Forest Service Road and Trail Closures: A forest closure order has been implemented to close the trails and roads within the Los Padres National Forest, Monterey Ranger District pursuant to USC 551 and 36 CFR 261.50(a). The order prohibits going into or being upon National Forest System lands within the Soberanes Fire area. For a complete list of closures please visit: http://www.fs.usda.gov/lpnf . The following sites are open: Pfeiffer Beach Day Use, Mill Creek Day Use, Willow Creek Day Use, Sand Dollar Day Use, Kirk Creek Campground, Nacimiento Campground, Ponderosa Campground and Plaskett Creek Campground.

California State Park Closures: Point Sur Light Station State Historic Park is open and guided tours will resume today. Go to http://www.pointsur.org for more information. Portions of Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park including the McWay Falls trail have opened. All lands and trails east of the parking lot and the campground remain closed. The Big Sur Lodge is open, however, Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park Day Use and Campgrounds remain closed. Go to http://www.bigsurlodge.com for more information.

The following park units remain closed:· Andrew Molera State Park -All park lands closed to public entry; Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park – All park lands except the Big Sur Lodge closed to public entry; Garrapata State Park – All park lands east of Hwy 1 closed to public entry.
Evacuation Orders and Warnings: An evacuation ORDER remains in effect for Coast Ridge Rd. from mile marker 1.5 to Marble Peak at the end of the road. A WARNING remains for Tassajara Road from Carmel Valley Road to the Tassajara Hot Springs Zen Center. This area includes all roads that lead from the above described roads.

Donations: Local relief efforts to the fire victims have been provided by the Coast Property Owners Association (CPOA) and the Community Foundation for Monterey County. Donations can be made to the CPOA at Coast Property Owners Association, PO Box 59, Big Sur, CA 93920 or the Community Foundation for Monterey County, 2354 Garden Road, Monterey, CA 93940 (831)375-9712.

The Red Cross prepares for, responds to, and helps people recover from disasters big and small. For any unmet disaster related needs, please call their 24 hour hotline at 1-866-272-2237.

####

6:00 am – Here are the usual maps for today, and a new one I found:

image

Distance between fires map in PDF

image

IR Map in PDF link

image

So Ops Map in PDF link

Here are the weather and fire behavior predictions, which are contained within the much larger Incident Plan (42 pages) so they are screen shots, and as such do not have links.

image

 

image

 

 

~ by bigsurkate on August 27, 2016.

15 Responses to “Soberanes Fire, Day 37, 8/27/16”

  1. This comes directly from Tassajara. I am not giving the name of the person it came from, but can attest to it comes from the top:

    “It has been very confusing. The man who gave us the “absolutely no help” message, had seemed very supportive when at Tassajara, and also seemed very uncomfortable as he was giving us that new message. The day after that no message, 2 safety officers (or something) came to ZMC from the FS and asked if we needed anything. Yesterday they came back with the woman who helps to assign crews and they looked at our request for help to cut line. She said she will do her best to get us a crew for 2 days, which would be a big help. One “problem” it appears is that we have done so much prep and spent so much on equipment that they think we don’t need anything. Maybe this is true compared to others. My feeling is that the main thing that would be helpful to us is to have even one or two more people who have actually fought fire there when the fire comes. We have great crew, but very inexperienced.

    These are just my thoughts and should not be taken as true. We are trying to decide on our strategy and I or someone will include you as we know. Thank you so much for your support.”

  2. In the meantime you can call: 831-204-0446 or email soberanesfire2016@gmail.com to express your concern that Tassajara is not being given support for even clearance protection, which is clearly part of Cal Fire stated mission.
    Cal Fire’s mission is: “The Department of Forestry and Fire Protection serves and safeguards the people and protects the property and resources of California.

  3. Lots of chopper activity in Palo Colorado right now. Any update on what’s going on?

  4. Steve, I sent an email. Thanks for sharing.

  5. I haven’t heard or been informed of anything. Back Country, perhaps? Tassajara or Hendericks (?) Ridge?

    bigsurkate

  6. To Steve Harper:

    When you say “from the top”, is that from Tassajara top or CAlfire or USF top?

    Also, the CalFire Statement reads: ” “The Department of Forestry ….”. I thought the Dep of Forestry is not the same as CalFire, or is the USF different from the Department of Forestry, or is the Dep. of Forestry part of CalFire. I believe USF is not responsible for anything outside Federal lands.

    Just wanting to fully understand what you are stating.

    And … suggestion to get 2 experienced fire crew … maybe Tassajara can do a fundraising specifically to fund two seasoned firefighters if government help is not forthcoming.

    From experience, when one states one will do ‘it myself’ when it should be done by government, they may come running. I can tell you from experience.

    The Alaska crew may be kind and have an understanding of what it is like to live rural. Be well.

    Regine

  7. Any word on what the “report of fire” at Ventana/SR1 on the CHP web site is about? It’s been off and on the current Incidents page since 4pm this afternoon.
    Incident: 00263 Type: Report of Fire
    Location: Sr1 / Ventana Loc Desc: SR1 / VENTANA, MM 44.9
    Lat/Lon: 36.233742 -121.767075
    Detail Information
    4:13 PM 1 [1] FIRE DETAIL
    Unit Information
    4:13 PM 8 Unit Assigned
    4:13 PM 7 Unit Enroute
    4:13 PM 6 Unit At Scene
    4:14 PM 5 Unit Cleared
    4:14 PM 4 Unit Assigned
    5:08 PM 3 Unit At Scene
    6:13 PM 2 Unit Assigned
    6:48 PM 1 Unit At Scene

  8. Went to work today about noon and crossed more Fire Traffic than I have so far. I came home about 6:30 today and crossed more Fire traffic than I have before except for earlier today. All this on Tassajara road.

    Kate, if you can easily post the document which showed the work order of the day. That was really informative cause it showed what work was planned in each Section of the fire area.

    Remember, thats the doc where I found out about ‘Doing Coyote’. And the doc you sent with fireman terms … its hilarious … I have read lots of it and was only on the letter D. One could draw a comic cartoon for may of the expressions being used in the wild fire industry. I found it worth reading …

  9. I haven’t seen it, Jeff, but given that is the entrance to the Coast Road and the firing ops that have been going on there in the past, could it be related to that?

    bigsurkate

  10. Regine, that document is over 42 pages long. I can’t post it. I can send you the link, if you wish. Write me privately.

    bigsurkate

  11. Kate, I don’t know what time you posted Martha’s question but I would be interested in a meeting. I have not been able to discern if there is any further activity above Coast Ridge Road but we have had fire crews on Partington the past few days. Thanks to Martha for the option. Dave Smiley

  12. I’ll forward your comment to Martha.

    bigsurkate

  13. So here’s my take on the east side of Soberanes:
    If they lose it on hennicksens, most of cachagua and jamesburg are toast. That said there has been nothing remotely threatening that line in 3+ weeks. To me the main disconnect is the continued imposition of an evacuation warning, which supposes some element of risk, when there are no actions being taken or staffing levels/assignments reflective of much of an active attempt to further mitigate such a risk (while there is time). This leads me to believe the risk is minor. If that’s the case then the imposition of the warning state, with it’s implied potential for an instant shift to an evacuation order is an unnecessary and unwarranted stress on the community. At this point my main fear is that the fire behavior will suddenly change in a major way and put that line at real risk, before the incident team realizes the severity and can react, or it will happen at a time when resources have been reallocated to other incidents and the team has nothing to react with in the time available. Assuming the team does know what they are doing, and all indications so far are that they do, then addressing concerns such as mine really comes down to trust and communication.

  14. Nice analysis, Mike. Thanks.

    bigsurkate

  15. Definitions of Coyote Tactics and other wildfire terms can be found here:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Glossary_of_wildfire_terms

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