Storm Watch, 11/2/08


Got a call from Debbie this morning. She lives at Juan Higuera Creek and the Big Sur River, for those who do not know her. She ran out of her house last night with nothing but the clothes on her back. One car was up on higher ground, but if she opened the door to the Explorer, the water would have rushed in. So she set out on foot, through mud up almost to her thighs, with Molly, her younger yellow lab walking with her up to the highway, by flashlight. Billy, the older yellow lab, had to be left behind, as he cannot walk well, and is WAY to big to carry.

“It all happened so fast,” she said.

BUT Blaze Engineering came to the rescue — Tevye Morgenrath and Dave Martin — with their BIG equipment. Tevye got Billy into the bucket of the loader, and drove him up to Glen Oaks, where Debbie was!! Her house is covered in mud, the porch is pretty much gone, but she and the dogs are okay, thanks to Blaze, who also redirected the water away from her house and back to the Big Sur River. What a story! She will send me photos tomorrow. She wishes she got one of Billy in the loader’s bucket!

And all of us who love Debbie send BIG hugs and kisses to Blaze Engineering’s Tevye and Dave for helping our friend during this winter storm event! Thanks, so much!!

And here’s a photo from this morning, just for grins.  You’ve all seen my view to the north hundreds of times, during the fire. Here’s one looking south. That is Los Burros or Willow Creek top in the back.

9:30 AM Road conditions: As reported earlier this morning, the road is open again. However, as we all know, it could close again at any time, particularly at night, when Cal-Trans no longer patrols. For the next four months, use caution while traveling Highway One, particularly between Andrew Molera and Mill Creek, and particularly at night!

Juan Higuera Creek: Joyce Duffy just called with an “on the ground” report that the culvert and small bridge on JH Creek just before you get to The Grange is clogged and the river is now flowing OVER the bridge, through the parking lot of the Grange. Debbie is out, with her animals, thank god. Joyce just walked this area, and is going to higher ground herself.

Storm conditions: Reports from the north, and conditions here on the ridge, seem to indicate this storm is over, with a rainfall of 2.4 inches, or 2.9 for the season. 

Predictions are that another storm will be arriving Monday night. I have not heard about the strength or timing of this storm, yet.

Interesting to compare rain totals down here at different elevations. At Highlands Peak, at Big Creek Reserve, the 24-hour total is 1.78″ at an elevation of 2490′; at Plaskett Ridge top the 24-hour total is 2.4″ (mine doesn’t do 1/100ths) at an elevation of 3272′ (okay, the rain gauge itself is probably only at 3200′, but I don’t have an altimeter); Mining Ridge is 2.91″ at an elevation of 4790′. (Mining Ridge is at the confluence of Big Creek and Devil’s Peak, north of Cone Peak). Fascinating the relationship between elevation and rainfall. Well, at least to me.

8:30 AM – Just had a serious cloud burst, here. Probably 1/10 of an inch in 10 minutes. Is letting up somewhat, now.

7:30 AM This “unofficial” report:

“Just got off the phone with Tom at Lucia. He says CalTrans has been by this morning and road is open now. Just lots of rocks down but, not any slides to speak of. The road at the [Coast Gallery] had some big rocks come down there according to Danny.” Reported by Keith. Thanks for this, Keith.

6:30 AM – 2.3 inches for this Saturday/Sunday storm. Season total: 2.8

5:30 AM Still raining. Will get rain totals when it is light and I can see the gauge. CHP reports below on closure. As I understand it, MM 46 is in the area around Sycamore Canyon Rd:



7 thoughts on “Storm Watch, 11/2/08

  1. Kate —

    If you have a mintue, could you please email me? I do not have contact information for you and would like to contact you about your precipitation reports.



  2. Hope I’m not speaking too soon, but it was good to hear that the road got back open so soon. That was a really major storm, and it was surprising that the slides were not worse. A lot of credit to the diligence of our CALTRANS guys who were ready and on top of it. They had their truck engines revved-up and their blades polished for action!
    Up in Carmel right now, it is just clouds, and no rain.

  3. Has the Grange been flooded/”mudded”? And…I am glad Debbie and dogs are ok! I got to know the dogs from times spent at the Grange…cool critters. Everyone be safe!

  4. Reports are that the Grange WAS flooded. It has been cleaned out to some degree, but the front door was still blocked this afternoon.

    Work is being done at that location, but due to the predicted storm on Monday, the polling place for voting has been moved to the Conference Center at the Lodge.

    Flooding is also reported in the front parking lot of the State Park. The Lodge and Store were protected by K-rails, I am informed.

  5. Thanks, Kate. We are all at home. Cats are still pissed off and mewowing outside. Up somewhat in debis and staying in the bedroom the only place not covered in mud an inch or so. Glenoaks put muddy dogs and muddy me up last night. Don Case brought me my morning Sunday paper this a.m and asked if there was anything he could do. What a guy. Wish I had a picture of Billy in the John Deere loader bucket last night. We should all thank our lucky stars for what we have and our amazing neighbors and friens. hugs. debbie

  6. Well…glad you are home safe and sound if a little damp Debbie. What about the other folks living down there…on the other side of the drive?

    Shame if the Grange was flooded…new wood floor and all.

    I am sending good, safe thoughts everyone’s way…sorry I am so far away and unable to help in person.

    Take care all…

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.