Soberanes Fire, Day 65, 9/24/16

For those of you on FB, check out Bryan Rhodes’s, Operations Chief, morning report. Very specific and informative. A link will only take you to their page, not the specific video, but scroll down a few posts and you will see it. LPNF FB page

9:30 am – John Chesnut Map:


Again, from J Croft, USFS:

“Looks like the firing operation on the SE corner is going to be very patient & diligent, looking for the right winds and conditions. This will mean periods of limited to no firing, and periods of extensive firing when the opportunities are in their favor. Our daily air quality forecast and any change in health advisory is posted in collaboration with the Monterey Bay Air Resource Board on the California Smoke Blog daily- Thanks again for joining our efforts to reach as many folks as possible and share the information!”

Not much growth yesterday, but I was watching a lot of dark, drift smoke from the interior I just before sunset last night. Here are the usual maps.


IR Topo Map in PDF


Briefing Map in PDF

And after a couple days absent, we have the current fire behavior and weather prediction discussions for both sides of the fire:


16 thoughts on “Soberanes Fire, Day 65, 9/24/16

  1. Hello All,

    I am seeing some interesting teleconnections establishing globally that could transition into some exciting tropical weather impacting California around mid October. This prediction is based on the rather active Western equatorial Pacific and strong thunderstorm development and depressions that are forming into energized typhoons. The Hadley cell or movement of this warm moisture rich air to the 30 latitude seems to be fairly established with typhoon Megi at a category 3 almost and another active area behind her, and this is the area I am very interested in! Generally when you have two typhoon line up they take different tracks and the un-named low east of Megi appears that it could migrate more Northwest and become an extra or “post tropical typhoon low” that becomes embedded in the Westerlies or jet stream that is finding a quasi equilibrium at a lower El Nino like trajectory. The North Atlantic Oscillation and North American Pattern is supportive of the scenario looking at model predictions with NAO going negative and PNA going more positive in week or so and would allow the jet to really transport a very wet warm low pressure towards us that could experience some cyclogenesis as it curls down toward Oregon and California around the second week of October. We are due for one of these storms since the last one i can really remember was 2007 early October when we got 10 inches of rain along our coastal range in 24 hours!! I am praying i am actually wrong with this and quite worried about Big Sur and the recent burn scars causing massive erosion problems. Def something to keep a close eye on!!

    P.S. This is another reason the fire should NOT BE BURNING RIGHT NOW so the focus could shift to restoration, stabilization, and replanting/reseeding of all impacted watersheds!!! Its getting late now and is very difficult to maintain erosion problems once the “first big rain” creates gullies and channels in steep slopes. I really hope the Los Padres dam removal and steel head restoration project doesn’t get ruined because of this stupid fire!!!

    Paul H

  2. “Cyclogenesis”, the word of the day Paul. Awesome narrative above. Thank you for the report.
    I’d like to add that there is restoration work already taking place. The dozer transports you see along Hwy One 20 miles north of the head means bulldozers are up in the burn as part of the BAER operation. I noticed the other day the dozer containment lines near Arroyo Seco already had water bars placed on it. That was forward thinking by that crew for sure.
    Here is a simple overview of BAER.

  3. The fire on the Church Creek interior tongue is burning up the slope to the east (faces south west). This is hemmed in by the Chews ridge back burnout. The fire head can likely be steered right into the black.

    I hope the Incident Command doesn’t feel compelled to run a new back burn all the way south and west to Rodeo Flats. There is virtually no heat on that entire section of the fire, so the burn is would be largely gratuitous.
    October weather is likely to be accompanied by NW windstorms, and a backburn that turns west will be crossways to the weather, and much more likely to escape again.

  4. Paul’s forecast has me excited & concerned – These roads all throughout the county have already taken a massive beating- Debris flows will turn these weak areas creek sheds, rivers, & canyon roadways into another week on week search & rescue recover missions with probable power outages, roads closed, and fallen dead trees making for long delays coming in and out. Cal Trans & electrical industries will be swamped in activity.

  5. HWY 1 was like a campground in my area last night. People camped in almost ever pullout. Pitched tents, sleeping pads next to cars, people sleeping in cars with coolers and tables outside, motor homes, etc. No law enforcement on patrols to monitor this illegal activity. Just spent over an hour picking up TP, beer bottles, bbq coals and other misc. trash. I feel this problem just keeps getting worse and government agencies aren’t doing anything about it. Dispersed camping in Big Sur is out of control! You think this incident would wake them up!!! They claim they don’t have the funds and resources for a night patrol unit for the busy and fire prone summer months but can spend over 200 million dollars to put out a fire that could have been prevented.

  6. The video was informative. Designating the fireline in the Lost Valley tongue as “contained” is suggestive that the final box will connect from Lost Valley Creek to the Arroyo Seco line near the Twin Lakes. That provides 100% containment without expanding the southern edge of the fire. This means the strange Escondido>Rodeo Flat fireline is likely obsolete, (it already is off the map).

  7. I noticed that Escondido proposed line was gone too.
    i had wondered about that one. In retrospect I think it was just some contingency planning that proved unnecessary as the Southern end remained quiet..
    I also think that the Chews Ridge backburn that escaped their control lines just ate up any assets that might have been relegated to that task.

    Heading off tomorrow for my annual disappearing act. With Ventana closed Will be going around the Machesna Wilderness area instead.
    When I get back I hope to read that this thing is at least contained.
    Have a good week all.

  8. About an hour ago LPNF posted three pictures on its Facebook page. Jack’s cabin survived as did the Church Ranch and Tanbark.

  9. It is on FB. I watched it this am. Tonight’s is not up yet. Do a search for Los Padres National Forest and when you Get to their page, scroll down until you see it. No, I can’t put videos up on my site. I would be charged more for that, and since this is all on me, I don’t want to get into monthly bills for the long haul.


  10. I remember the 10″ of 2007, it was right after the Jade Festival closed and I breathed a sigh of relief it didn’t happen during the festival! We’ve just postponed this year’s Jade Festival (to the Spring) due to the inability to get our Special Use Permit from the USFS, for valid reasons, so if your prediction comes true, I’m happy we postponed it!!
    I hope it doesn’t come to be, tho, it would be disastrous.

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