Soberanes Fire, Day 53, 9/12/16

8:00 pm – here is one important detail: At noon, or so, the IC asked to divert aircraft from the Willard fire up by Susanville, and at 1 pm IC ordered the VLAT from McClellan, and 4 or 5 type 1 AT. That leads me to believe something unexpected happened.

This is what Keith Vandervere has to say about today:

“It may have been cooler today, but lower humidity and breezy conditions created an active fire day anyway. There was no new heat detected at the leading edge of the fire, near the Arroyo Seco River, but the fire along the North Fork Big Sur River burned west to the edge of the fresh black along Cienega Creek and made another big run to the ridge overlooking Tassajara Creek. The firing operations on the Coast Ridge also resulted in a large-scale burn today. The red heat detections were acquired around noon and 2:00 pm this afternoon.” This is the MODIS map he includes, but remember, the heat detections can be false readings, and I haven’t seen anything official, yet. At 6am, the CIIMT-4 takes over from the Alaska one.


To read the rest of his post re today’s activity, go to: Xasauan Today

7:30 pm – I am gathering up what details I can, after being gone all day for my annual physical. My doc asked me what I had been up to and I told her I’d been busy for a couple months with the blog I write about the Soberanes Fire. She asked, “What blog?” I said, “BigSurKate.” She said, “OMG, I have a cabin in Cachagua and I read you regularly. You are Bigsurkate.” “Yup, that’s me.” She has been treating me for years. Now she wants me to monitor my blood pressure for a month. Hmmm…

While I was gone, my dog sitter informed me it was incredibly smokey up here. There was a column when I left, but fog up high when I got home. One person in hot spring canyon heard (but could not see due to fog) a lot of air traffic, including what he thought was the DC-10. Another friend was monitoring the air traffic site, and noted the DC-10 was flying “our” fire today, and was concerned there may have been a blow up. I have a photo from earlier today taken from Carmel Valley of the plume that I will post later.

As one friend says, I am busy “chasing details” tonight, and will post all that I find, while I sip on red wine (it is quite chilly up here) and nibble on cheese and grapes.

8 am – John Chesnut’s Map:


7:30 am – quite a plume building on the west side of the fire – presumably from the planned burn out operation in the vicinity of Marble Peak. Fog is also quite high – around 2,000 ft. So some of you will be spared seeing it.

4 am – our IR pilot is back. The flight was earlier than usual at 9:21 pm, plotting a total of 105,705 acres, which at first glance means no significant increase, however, yesterday’s acreage was based on “on ground” estimates, so this is probably more accurate. Also, a reminder than there is a community meeting tonight at 6 pm at the fire station/community room in Arroyo Seco. Both the Alaskan Interagency Incident Management Team and the incoming California Interagency Incident Management Team 4 will be there to discuss the fire. If Interested in information about the new IMT, here is their website: CIIMT-4 Website


IR Topo Map in PDF


South Ops Map in PDF