Carmel/River Fires, Sunday, 8/23/20, Red Flag Warning

Carmel (Day 6) and River (Day 8) are combined into one post. Click the title to open a separate window, refresh this page throughout the day. Stay safe and smart. Please maintain situational awareness at all times. Scroll down for “unofficial” satellite imagery updated 7:05 AM. A Red Flag Warning was issued for Sunday 5AM to Monday 5PM. CalFire Incident page Carmel & River  CalFire Facebook Updates here. Sheriff Facebook Updates here. Monterey County Office of Emergency Services Facebook here

118308297_3407746439340688_6300624719114404539_o (1)118197492_3407746996007299_8110255702323800627_o118481705_3407750839340248_5940138907382507828_o

118308297_3407746439340688_6300624719114404539_oRiver 8.23 PM Update_Page_2118239968_3407747246007274_5851070306436572611_o

4:25 PM: Carmel and River Fires Google Earth Image with VIIRS and MODIS Satellite and CDF Infrared Outline (white line from 08/20/20). The Latest satellite heat detection spots are from 3:42 AM PM. (please see Important Caveat note at the bottom of this post)

Click this link to view larger image: Carmel_River_Fire2_082320


#RiverFire and #CarmelFire 8.23.20 AM Operational Briefing

Carmel Fire Morning Update

Carmel Fire at 6,695 acres, 10% contained, 47 structures destroyed. The fire continued to burn up to existing containment lines and consumed interior islands of vegetation throughout the night. The fire behavior was moderate with fair humidity recovery. The fire is currently burning in close proximity to structures. The statewide drawdown of resources has impeded the critical need to support fire suppression of the fire. Most agencies are at drawdown and unable to fill resource requests. The lack of resource availability is affecting strategy and tactics.

Damage inspection is approximately 40% complete

River Fire Morning Update

River Fire at 48,424 acres, 15% contained, 19 structures destroyed. Last night the southern portion of the fire continued to actively burn to the south with winds from the northwest. The east side continued to back down to the dozer lines and agricultural fields and interior islands continued to burn remaining fuel.

The fire is expected to continue to burn on the southern end of the fire. The wind shift will be the concern on the southern edge, allowing the fire to out grow the current lines on the southeast portion of the fire. If the fire moves too far south when the winds move to the southeast flow, it could merge into the Carmel Fire.

Damage inspection is approximately 45% complete.


Evacuation  Notifications here   (note: select the DASHBOARD tab from a desktop computer for a detailed map with hot spots plus evacuation zones)

Evacuation Warning – Zone 24 ( Arroyo Seco Rd, Campgrounds and Pine Canyon Rd, outside of KingCity) 8:52 PM

Evacuation Order – R Zone 14 (River Road to Arroyo Seco) 5:00 PM

Evacuation Warning – Zone 21 (West on Carmel Valley Road from Pinetree Lane to Rancho San Carlos) 10:03 AM

Evacuation Warning – Zone 20 9:55 AM:

Evacuation Order – Zones 19 (West of Carmel Valley Road between Klondike Canyon and Pinetree Lane) 9:01 AM

Evacuation Order – Zone 17 and 18 (East of Carmel Valley Road to Laureless Grade and Highway 68) 9:00 AM

Evacuation Map can be found here (Red is Order, Yellow is Warning)


Resources for Evacuees

Monterey County is expanding its evacuation shelters to south Monterey County. Due to additional evacuations from the River Fire, an evacuation shelter is being opened at the Salinas Valley Fairgrounds, 625 Division Street in King City.
The shelter will open Sunday morning, August 23rd at 8 am and will provide sleeping and meal accommodations. Evacuees who wish to shelter using their RVs can bring them to the fairground and check in at the shelter. This shelter will be able to accommodate evacuees with pets.
The shelter will be able to accommodate approximately 40 residents and will follow COVID-19 protocols. Evacuees should have face coverings when entering the shelter and be prepared to social distance. Shelter sleeping arrangements are being set up with COVID-19 health protocols. Temperature checks will be taken for everyone’s safety.

Here is a list of all county evacuation shelters:

Here is a list of all county evacuation shelters:
  •  Salinas Valley Fairgrounds, 625 Division Street, King City
  •  Carmel Middle School, 4380 Carmel Valley Rd, Carmel
  •  Sherwood Hall, 940 North Main Street, Salinas
  •  Monterey Conference Center, 1 Portola Plaza, Monterey

The County also has an evacuation center at the King City Library, 402 Broadway, which provides information and support, snacks, water and charging for devices for evacuee. It is open 8 am to 8 pm.

For donations visit or go to the Seaside High School (2200 Noche Buena St, Seaside, CA 93955) between noon and 5pm Today August 23rd. You can also pick up supplies such as food, water, clothing, pet food, and diapers at the Seaside High School Location
For the most up to date and detailed information visit:

From SPCA: The SPCA is currently under an evacuation warning. We are safe, and we are here for you and your pets. We have been prepared for this for years. We are currently moving supplies and animals to the Monterey County Fairgrounds and Hitchcock Road Animal Services. We are doing this now so that we can continue our promise to always be here for you.

7:05 AM: Carmel and River Fires Google Earth Image with VIIRS and MODIS Satellite and CDF Infrared Outline (white line from 08/20/20). The Latest satellite heat detection spots are from 2:54 AM PT (please see Important Caveat note at the bottom of this post)

Click this link to view larger image: Carmel_River_Fire_082320


Palo Escrito View: Carmel_River_Fire_Escrito_082320


Sleepy Hollow View: Carmel_River_Fire_Sleepy_082320


Maps by John Chesnut: River 8_23 AM


Carmel 8_23 AM v2


PIO Maps:



Saturday Evening CalFire Update:

Weather Watch in effect:

The greatest threat for elevated thunderstorms will be from Sunday night into Monday morning. Lightning and gusty winds have the potential to produce new fire starts. Now is the time to prepare if a fire starts near you. Visit for more info. #CaWx



Yesterday’s Contingency Map (large PDF file with current CalFire contingency lines): Contingency_36x48_Land_20200821_0447


Yesterday’s PIO Map: PIO 112×17 8-22


Related Links

Incident Cooperators

For other information sources see:

  • Office of Emergency Services response page here
  • Quick reference of key resources to stay up-to-date here
  • National interagency Fire Center Map can be found here
  • Current Wind can be found here
  • Alert Wildfire Camera here
  • Scanner Fire & Sheriff
  • Air Traffic here
  • Road Closures here
  • CalFire’s Ready, Set, Go! Checklist here (see page 9)
  • Twitter links: #RiverFire and #CarmelFire

Important caveats: Please note that the squares on the heat detection maps represent the expected margin of error, not the size of the area burned. In other words, the detection could have come from anywhere within the square. Also be aware that false detections do sometimes occur. An outlying or “over the line” heat detection is not, by itself, a confirmation that there is fire in the area indicated. In addition, the satellites do not detect heat everywhere that fire exists. Creeping, backing or smoldering fire is often not detected. Finally, the detections are only snapshots of moments in time. Flare ups that occur before or after a satellite pass may be entirely missed.

Also be aware that yellow squares disappear from the map after 6 days. These are not maps of the area burned since the fire began, just maps of where heat has been detected during the past week.

2 thoughts on “Carmel/River Fires, Sunday, 8/23/20, Red Flag Warning

  1. Big Sur Kate – you rock. Thank you for all your work on this site. It truly is the go-to site to stay current on all aspects of the fire status.

Leave a Reply

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