Kate asked me to let you know the internet gremlins are keeping her from you again. Things have calmed down a bit around here at least in the Valley.  A neighbor told me she has measured 7.5″ of rain in the last 48 hours.  My river marker hasn’t moved in a couple of hours which is a good thing.  Stopped raining enough that I put my rain coat in the dryer.  It’s been a wild ride and hope we are getting our much needed break.  We’ll be in touch.

Here we go again, 11/30/12

1 pm – I contacted MoCo Rd re N-F, given the possible conditions on Highway One, and this is what they said: “Public Works crews are headed to N-F Road, should get there in about an hour. They’ll drive from East to West to check conditions. I won’t hear from them for hours, but I’ll let you know what I hear back.” Also, something is happening on Old Coast Rd, but can’t tell what. MoCo Rd advised, per CHP.

12:10 – 101 at Crazy Horse Canyon closed for an hour to remove debris CHP didn’t say if it was NB or SB.

Noon – Another cell phone alert. NOAA FLASH FLOOD Warning extended to 1:30 pm
NB 101 #2 lane north of Chualar is completely flooded. Water has been rising since 9 am, per CHP.

11:30 am – Rocky Creek is still open at this point, but my sources says there are rocks everywhere there could be rocks. More as things develop.

11 am – CT is calling it the Rocky Creek Closure. Not official, yet. I have sources headed that direction, will post as soon as I hear from them or get official notification.


This is Juan Higuera Creek, photo by bigsurdeb. Thanks, deb!

10:30 am – per phone alert from NWS, flash flood warning extended until noon. Downloading a photo of Juan Higuera Creek which I will upload if I can! Internet is working, but slow and iffy.

10:00 am – CHP reporting mud/rock slide in Rocky Creek construction area. Spooky! This was removed from the site less than 5 mins after reported.

9:30 am – just got an alert to my cell phone that we have been upgraded from a flash flood watch to a flash flood warning until 10:30 am, which means flooding is imminent! The loud unusual beeping startled me, and it took a minute to figure out it was my phone!

9 am – There is a boulder down at Hurricane Point, some workers from town are reporting the Highway is a lake, but so far, no major slides reported. Probably some smaller ones I haven’t heard about. Flash Flood Watch still in effect here in Big Sur, LPNF, and Santa Lucia Mountains, so be careful out there! One friend in Big Sur Valley reported almost 2″ overnight. NOAA Big Sur RAWS reports just over 3″ in the last 24 hours. I haven’t checked mine, yet. Winds still a factor today, as well. As bigsurdeb says, ” Quack, quack.”

Here is today’s satellite photo from Dave Allan to show what is in store. It is a slow moving storm, so we will likely see heavy rain at times in certain areas.


And here is the current NEXRAD


Flash Flood Watch from 7 pm tonight through Monday morning!

…Flash Flood Watch in effect from 7 PM PST this evening through Monday morning… The National Weather Service San Francisco Bay area has expanded the * Flash Flood Watch to include a portion of California… including the following areas…Santa Lucia mountains and Los Padres National Forest and southern Monterey Bay and Big Sur coast. * From 7 PM PST this evening through Monday morning * rain is scheduled to arrive tonight and continue through the weekend with several storm systems. Copious amounts are expected in higher elevation areas…totals of 6 inches or more may fall. Given that watersheds are saturated from the prior storm on Tuesday…some smaller creeks may approach or overtop banks. * Storm drains may be overwhelmed and culverts may become blocked by debris…urban flooding is likely. At times… rainfall rates may exceed guidance thresholds for producing debris flows and slides in mountainous areas. Precautionary/preparedness actions… A Flash Flood Watch means that conditions may develop that lead to flash flooding. Flash flooding is a very dangerous situation. You should monitor later forecasts and be prepared to take action should flash flood warnings be issued.

Storm, 11/29/12

4:00 pm – I got a 1/10th of an inch today, bringing the season total to 4.6″. It just started POURING here! Fortunately, I had already got all the fur kids inside to feed them. Got so dark about an hour ago, I turned on a light, filled a couple of oil lamps and lit them, and put another log on the fire for the evening. I love reading on my iPad – don’t need a separate light! I have found that if I run my genie for about an hour a day during these “no sun days” I have power for at least 24 hours, if I am judicious. I haven’t pushed it to see how long the power lasts, just run it every afternoon for an hour. What a great system!

I have been monitoring the CHP site on and off all day, and so far, no serious issues on Highway One, at least here in Big Sur, although I am sure CT has had their hands full.

10 am – here is the latest satellite photo, courtesy of Dave Allan


Here is the latest NEXRAD


As we all know, significant rain expected tonight through Sunday, per NOAA. Looks like we will get a break during the day today, although I got a bit of rain about an hour ago.

Also, the latest Rocky Creek update (#7) provides the usual closures next week, Sunday through Thursday, 9 pm-7am. For visuals of the bents being installed, scroll down a couple of posts.

Storm, 11/28/12

NOTE – I have no clue why all my links categories disappeared and everything is lumped together as “bookmarks.” I am trying to rectify. Sorry for the inconvenience! An hour later, they reappeared just as mysteriously as they disappeared. Cyber goblins, clearly!

2 pm – the only “known” casualty at my place, so far, and I haven’t checked much, is my front screen door. It is in tatters. I don’t believe my wind gauge. It has been far stronger than 35 mph. Checking automatic sites in the area, those gauges are reporting much higher winds. Santa Cruz County is not fairing very well. Every time I check the CHP website there is another road closure due to downed trees or power lines, even one that sparked a vegetation fire. Hang in there everyone!

11am – 24″ tree down on 68 near Morse Blvd. blocking the EB lane.

Up here, I woke at 3 am to heavy winds. By dawn, they were quite impressive, and have remained so. The rain began just after 8 am. I was both a Curved Bar Girl Scout and a WAC. I have been trained to “Be Prepared.” I think I am. I sit in front of a roaring fire, with plenty of wood on hand.

In checking my usual sites, I see there is already a tree branch impeding traffic at Point Lobos, but should be removed shortly. Probably just the first of many, given the winds. Also NOAA is reporting that 4-8″ of rain is expected by Sunday in Big Sur and Los Padres. I’ll probably be on the 8″ side, but haven’t checked, yet. Later, when there is a break.

Wind is averaging about 25-27 mph per my gauge, with gusts of 35 mph. That’s between 10-11 am.

Be safe, be aware, and be careful out there. I am staying put!

Here is the NEXRAD radar:


Getting ready for storms

Today was prep day, and I had help – getting wood inside, getting two leaks patched (hopefully), making sure I had enough water – nothing is worse than running low on water when it is raining cats and dogs outside – cooking up a batch of chili, turning a Sat turkey carcass into soup for the duration, making sure as much is secure as I can. My job was to man the kitchen. 😉 An easy job, I must say.

All eyes will be on the weather stories for the rest of the week. Would love to share yours with my readers. Send to kwnovoa@mac.com

Here is the satellite shot, thanks to Dave Allen!

BTW, great moonrise tonight between the clouds. Wish I’d had my camera!


Rocky Creek Viaduct update with photos

Below is an update I received today from one of the inspectors at the Rocky Creek jobsite:

“CIDH piles for bents 3, 4, 5 an 6 are complete. Contractor is currently working at bent 2 pile. The average production rate for the piles is still approximately 1 pile per week. However, bent 2 pile may take longer as drilling can only be performed during the night under full closure due to space constrains. Placement of the piles is on schedule.”

I have attached a photo below that illustrates this information:

(See attached file: Updated drilling locations.JPG)

Also, I’m going to be on a Monterey TV program tomorrow discussing the Rocky Creek project as well as the Pitkins Rock Shed project. Not sure if you can get this program where you are but I thought I’d mention it. Below is a link to more information.


Have a good day!



Also, here is a photo of a bridge showing the part labeled “the bent.”


Batten down the hatches!

Starting Wednesday, and continuing for 5 days, a significant series of storms is progged to hit our area. I am running down to Cambria to stock up on more dog food, gas for the genie to back up the solar system, and wine … Priorities, you know. Tomorrow will be at home prep, bringing in firewood, securing all that I can, as some of theses storms will bring gusty winds, as well.

FWIW, CT was doing some work at Mud Creek, cleaning up the usual mess. This could be interesting. 15″ predicted in the North Bay, 4-8 inches down our way.

Burn Permits Notice

IMPORTANT: Backyard burn permits are required for this burn season. Burning is allowed ONLY on Permissive Burn Days. The Permit holder MUST call 1-800-225-2876, or visit the Air Resources Board to find out if it is a permissive burn day.

Big Sur Volunteer Fire Brigade coverage area

Residential Burn Permits

Beginning with the “Backyard Burn” season starting on December 1, 2012 as regulated by the Monterey Bay Unified Air Pollution Control District, the Big Sur Volunteer Fire Brigade now requires a permit for burning yard trimmings on residential property within the response area of the Big Sur Volunteer Fire Brigade. Burning on residential property requires a permit from either the local fire department or the Monterey Bay Unified Air Pollution Control District. In order to properly manage and monitor residential burning within the Big Sur community at the local level, burn permits are now required from the Big Sur Volunteer Fire Brigade.

Permits for burning on residential property within the response area of the Big Sur Volunteer Fire Brigade are valid for the entire burn season which begins on December 1st of each year and ends on April 30th of the following year. Each new burn season requires a new burn permit. There is no fee for the burn permit. Burn Permits may be obtained at our web site or by calling the Brigade at 831-667-2113 or email to bigsurfire@gmail.com.

The Residential Burn Permit is for burning yard trimmings only on residential property in accordance with the terms and conditions as outlined in the burn permit. Any violations of the terms and conditions of the permit may be cause for the permit being revoked. A burn permit for recreational fires or barbeques is not required. Information on “backyard burning” can be found at the MBUAPCD website at: http://www.mbuapcd.org by clicking on the “Burn Permits” tab.

All data collected stays with the local Brigade and is used to know where burns take place in case of smoke reports.

Mid-Coast Fire Brigade coverage area

Permits Now Required For Backyard Burn Season – Free From Fire Brigade

Burn season will begin December 1st, 2012 and there is a major change, The Monterey Bay Unified Air Pollution Control District is now requiring that those who burn in our area of responsibility obtain a free burn permit through the Mid-Coast Fire Brigade. Those without permits are subject to steep fines from the MBUAPCD.

Please understand that the Fire Brigade is in no way responsible for this new requirement. Apply Online For Backyard Burn Permit. For those without Internet access who wish to obtain a burn permit, please call the Fire Brigade at 831-625-8175. If you have questions, please email the Fire Brigade for more information. See burn guidelines at our web site: http://www.midcoastfirebrigade.org/.

Arts & Crafts Fair and Small Business Saturday

Tomorrow is Small Business Saturday! Support your local community and shop small, preferably here in Big Sur!

So many wonderful ways to support the local Big Sur economy, small businesses, artisans., and non-profits by shopping locally, stopping by the Annual Arts & Crafts Fair at The Grange for one-of-a-kind items and if down on the South Coast, stop by The Hermitage and shop at their lovely gift shop. Our community is teeming with great small businesses that offer wonderful opportunities to start your Holiday shopping adventures.

The History of Small Business in America

(From the U.S. Department of State)

“Americans have always believed they live in a land of opportunity, where anybody who has a good idea, determination, and a willingness to work hard can start a business and prosper. In practice, this belief in entrepreneurship has taken many forms, from the self-employed individual to the global conglomerate.

In the 17th and 18th centuries, the public extolled the pioneer who overcame great hardships to carve a home and a way of life out of the wilderness. In 19th-century America, as small agricultural enterprises rapidly spread across the vast expanse of the American frontier, the homesteading farmer embodied many of the ideals of the economic individualist. But as the nation’s population grew and cities assumed increased economic importance, the dream of being in business for oneself evolved to include small merchants, independent craftsmen, and self-reliant professionals.

Today, the American economy boasts a wide array of enterprises, ranging from one-person sole proprietorships to some of the world’s largest corporations. In 1995, there were 16.4 million non-farm, sole proprietorships, 1.6 million partnerships, and 4.5 million corporations in the United States — a total of 22.5 million independent enterprises.”