Highway Vandenberg Fire

5:00 pm – local news is reporting:
“Highway 1 re-opened just before 5 pm. So far the fire has burned more than 300 acres…There are 25 buildings on-base that have been evacuated…All non essential military personnel have been asked to evacuate VAFB and stand by for orders. The cause of the fire is blamed on a blown transformer. There are no reports of any buildings being burned in the fire.”

4:00 pm – Earlier today, a fire broke out on Highway One, near the main gate of Vandenburg Air Force Base. Much of the base was evacuated and Highway One was closed. At 3:15 it was 150 acres. Lots of air attack and strike teams have been responding on this one today, and as of 4:00 pm, it is reported by air attack that the fire is 400 acres and 80% “lined.” “Lined” is NOT the same as contained. This is being reported by gacc.nifc.gov as of 4 pm today:

“Highway Incident CA-AFV-003253 Fire reported at 288 + acres 0% percent containment burning in grass and medium brush. Threats / Values at risk Lompoc Federal penitentiary, Air force Village West and a major electrical transmission line in the fires perimeter. There are reports that the power to Vandenberg Air force Base is out to a majority of the base proper with some sections of the base are on back up power or generators. A Request for a Type 2 CIIMT has been placed to the GACC. There are a number of VLATs (Very Large Air tankers) are assigned.”

The DC-10 is working this one, but I don’t know what other VLATs.

There is live streaming video on Fox 11 (link below) which I cannot vouch for, as it is difficult for me to get live video with my connection.


Sunday Night in Big Sur

The gates opened at 6 pm. Guests arrived as early as 5:30 pm. Parking is a challenge at the HML, but so many wanted to come to support the guest of honor, Don Case, and his family. So, we came early, got good spots to park, and waited, chatting among ourselves.

When the gates opened, the lights were already twinkling, even though it was not yet dark. The line wound down the lighted path, where our names were either checked off, or donations made, and we were offered a copy of a water color painted by Don Case of the grassy field and redwoods which surround the HML.


The buffet, provided by the Big Sur Bakery and SLOW Foods Buffet, led by event orgainizer Mike Gilson, CPOA, provided wonderful food for our enjoyment.
Also of CPOA, Jeannie Ford’s children, Emily and Joe performed beautifully on violin and cello for the attendees.
Magnus Toren, curator of the HML, met and greeted all, as well as oversaw the venue and its preparation.

The number of attendees was astounding, and gratefully appreciated by Don and his family. It was so wonderful to see so many Big Surians in attendance, giving hope to Don and his family that replacement of his long-time home was truly a reality.

One of Don’s old friends came down from Sonoma, probably more old friends, but this gentleman I spoke with at dinner. He helped raise the roof on the original house 40 years ago.

I did not stay for the showing of Food, Inc. as it was dark and the road home requires significant attention, particularly as it was foggy, and I had a long way to go. Driving slowly to fit the conditions, I marveled at the community of which I have become a part. The love, joy, and sharing which permeated this gathering warmed me all the way down the coast.
don case
Don Case, you are well and truly loved, my friend.

And to bring this post to a close, a few words from Joyce Duffy: “I cannot put into words the tremendous jolt of love energy that we all got from last night.
Today when I left the Case home, Neva was resting in a lounge chair on the slab of the old house … Josh and Don were at a table in front of the old hearth trying to teach Oceana and Kiana to play dominoes … there is lightheartedness and peace and relaxation and a for-sure-now knowing that someday there will be a house around surrounding the family. We are all a bit speechless in reaction to the overwhelming shower of love and help.”

Sunday afternoon in Big Sur

Yes, it is true. Ventana is open again, after the kitchen fire destroyed it almost a year ago, and serving lunch on the patio!

I met several friends for lunch there, Sunday. The place looks marvelous. Before going on on the patio, we stopped to look at the art display for the silent auction to benefit the Big Sur Health Center. There were so many good pieces, and people had already bid $200 or more on each — silently, of course. Here is one wall of the offerings.


We went outside to sit down in gorgeous weather. Everything was perfect. Like a dummy, I set my camera on my lap. I don’t know what I was thinking. I can’t keep a napkin on my lap, never mind a camera. It slid to the concrete, and broke. For me, losing a camera is like losing a part of my soul. Thanks to the good eyes of Debbie, we found the 3 broken plastic pieces that allow the lens to lock in place. I got super glue at a local store, with the idea that I would try to fix it, if the camera wasn’t broken. So much for taking photos of the glorious food, restaurant, and the evening at the Henry Miller Library for Don Case’s houseraising fund raiser.

I saw Joyce Duffy at the HML when I first arrived. She had her camera. She would take photos. I could take photos with her camera. The evening would be saved. She was to email them today, if she could get to a computer. Alas, she did not get to a computer until tonight, and said none of the photos came out very good. If any are worth posting, I will post a few when I get them, with the story of the evening.

Now, back to the broken camera. This morning, I tried my other, telephoto lens, and it worked! The camera itself is not broken, just the lens. So I proceeded to try my idea with the super glue.

The first two pieces went on easily and well. One cannot even tell they were broken. The third piece was being difficult. I finally got it glued on, but not before I glued my fingers together, my fingers to the lens, and ultimately, caught the free-floating dog hair which permeates my place. I now have dog hair permanently glued to my fingertips. Imagine what my fingerprints must look like?
Do not try this at home.

I doubt it will work, and I can never trust the mount, again, so I ordered a new lens. The Jade Festival is less than 2 weeks away. I have to have my good lens.

So, that was my Sunday afternoon. How was yours?

This weekend in Big Sur

Sunday will be a busy day. A display of 36 local artists will be held at the Restaurant at Ventana.

Promo photo by (yet to be determined)

‘Recovered & Renewed – A Year Later’

Sunday, September 27 through Sunday, October 4, 2009
The Restaurant at Ventana
48123 Highway One, Big Sur

Benefiting the Big Sur Health Center
and our local Artists
36 artist created original pieces for this special event
You can preview the art at: www.recoveredandrenewed.com

That evening is the fundraiser for Don Case and the showing of Food, Inc. at the HML. Looks like a great day to be out and about!
Don Case

Two weeks from today – Jade Festival!

Count down has begun. Three days of fun, jade, food, and music so join us at noon on Friday, October 9th. It’s free — well entry is free. If you want food or jade, we’ll have vendors selling both. Stop in the first booth and say “hi.”

Also, a reminder that the fundraiser for Don Case is this Sunday at 6 pm at the HML. Come support a great effort!

Staying cool … sorta

Living up here at 3272 ft, a little over a mile from the ocean has many, many challenges, it is true. Seasons truly change here. The record high for the last 15 years up here has been 117 degrees. That is beyond painful. That is curl up and die painful. I try to remember that, when temps hit the triple digits for a week straight. Frankly, my body doesn’t care what the temperature was yesterday, never mind years ago. So, my body goes searching for ways to stay cool. All involve water. I wish I had a pool, a pond, a water trough, but I suspect if I did, all the yellow jackets in Big Sur would hold a convention here. So, instead, I make do with wearing something light, cotton, and wet. Wet, as in dripping wet. Every hour. And then get inside away from the yellow jackets, who are quite thirsty this year.

I yearn for the days of winter, and possible snow. My body doesn’t seem to remember the year it got down to 19 degrees. This is California, for gawd’s sake, and Coastal California. Mother Nature forgets it is supposed to be mild and mellow here by the ocean.

Gotta go and soak. While my body likes the dripping, my computer does not.

Fillmore- Moorpark Fire

Here is the map of the Guiberson Fire from about 3 am from GeoMac. Triple digit temperatures, low RH recovery, and mild to moderate Santa Ana winds continue to drive this fire, which is currently about 8500 acres and 10% contained. Reports indicated 1000 homes and a number of commercial buildings are under evacuation. Moorpark College, as well as several other schools in the area are closed today.
fillmore fire

Fire near Fillmore & Moorpark, Ventura Co.

10:30 pm – latest reports put this fire at 8500 acres and growing. Strike teams being sent from all over the state, including from Monterey.

6:00 pm – Per Ventura Co. FD PIO Bill Nash at 1610 hours~”6000 acres….0% containment”

3:00 pm – the Ventura County fire is called “Guiberson.” Cal-Fire reports: “. . . now at 2300+ acres. 0% 200 homes evacuated. 300+ FF’s on scene.”

1:30 pm – 300 plus acres. Being reported live on ktla as well as the link below. Cal-Fire team 10 activated it looks like. Lots of long range spotting going on, due to winds of 30 mph, gusting to 52 mph.

Officials with the Ventura County Fire Department say over 300 acres of dry brush have already burned and the blaze is moving in a south, southwest direction. There are an estimated 200 homes or ranches in the area and evacuations have been ordered.

The area south of Fillmore, north of Broadway Road and east of Grimes Canyon are under evacuation order, according to Frank O’Hanlon of the Ventura County Sheriff’s department. O’Hanlon says ranchers in the area should leave as “quickly as possible.”

The wind is carrying embers and starting spot fires about one mile out from the fire, said Bill Nash, a spokesman for the Ventura County Fire Department.

“The fire is moving quickly toward Moorpark,” Nash said. “It’s growing very quickly.”

12:30 pm

CBS local live feed

Wildlandfire is reporting 200 acres, but others report the visuals look much larger. it crested the ridge and is heading toward Moorpark.

Wiley Ridge RAWS shows Temp: 94.0° F Winds: 31 mph from NE Gusts: to 54 mph RH: 4% Fuel temp: 98.0° F

Nearest RAWS: here

11:45am Breaking News from KEYT Fillmore Fire
A fire that broke out this morning around 10:30 is continuing to burn near East Guiberson Road and Calumet Canyon Road over the hill toward Moorpark.

There are 8 air tankers and 4 firefighting helicopters currently battling the blaze, along with 46 firefighting engines.

Some of the resources that were working the Station Fire were reportedly diverted to help battle this blaze.

At last check it was two acres…but flames are visable…and there is a great deal of smoke seen throughout much of the area between Fillmore and Moorpark.

KEY News Bureau Chief Tracy Lehr is at the scene…and tells us that is extremely windy.

No homes are threatened at this point…however, the Fire Department is setting up structure protection on the Moorpark side of the fire.

The temperature in the very dry, windy area is currently 98 degrees.