Dolan Fire, Day 6, 8/23/20

Dolan Fire intro

A note from Matt Harris, chief of Big Sur Fire: Closures on Highway 1 are hard closures. Note that if you leave beyond closure at #DolanFire, you will not be able to come back.

Please check back throughout the day for update, or refresh your browser window if you are keeping it open.

For Carmel/River Fire, see Here    

Scroll down for A Red Flag Warning was issued for Sunday 5AM to Monday 5PM.


Public Information Phone: (831) 272-0222

Incident E-mail:

Incident Website:

For photos of all three fires, see here:

This is the link for the county created interactive evacuations map for all three fires. You can enter an address and find out the status. Nice job MoCo! Thank you.


10 pm, and the Dolan Fire daily briefing finally came through. This is my last point of the day/night. May the rest of the night and tomorrow be uneventful, weather-wise.

AUGUST 23, 2020 8:00 PM Public Information Phone: (831) 272-0222

Incident E-mail: 2020.Dolan@firenet.govIncident Website: Los Padres National Forest: 



Big Sur FD:
Incident Information:Start / Report Date: Aug. 18, 2020 Cause: UnknownFuels Involved: Chaparral, Brush, Timber understoryResources:Hand Crews: 9Engines: 42Dozers: 6 Size: 19,287Location: Hwy 1(MM32.20) N of Limekiln State Park, 10 miles S of Big SurHelicopters: 4
Fixed wing: 1Water Tenders: 6
Current Situation:
A Red Flag Warning remains in effect and will be in place until Monday evening, August 24, at 5:00 p.m. Thunderstorms with little to no precipitation are possible, particularly this evening and into the early morning, and will be accompanied by erratic and gusty outflow winds.
The fire is primarily backing, and the fire footprint has not significantly changed. Crews have made considerable progress creating dozer line to the North towards Partington Ridge. Crews began direct attack along the fire’s Southeast edge and continued point protection operations around Hermitage and Lucia. Today, firefighters secured more of the western perimeter of the fire along Hwy 1. Falling rocks and the potential of spot fires across the road remain as concerns on Hwy 1.
Aerial resources took advantage of clear skies to assist ground resources with retardant and bucket drops. However, smoke impacted air operations. As air quality and visibility improve, aviation assets will support crews on the ground.
Today, the Monterey County Sheriff’s Department entered into unified command with California Incident Management Team 2 and Big Sur Fire. The incident management team completed the move into a new incident command post at Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park.
The fire is threatening the communities of Hermitage, Partington Ridge, and Lucia. Multiple businesses, communications sites, parks and recreational sites are also threatened. Among natural resources threatened are the Ventana Wilderness and coastal watershed and habitat for threatened and endangered species, including the California condor.

Dolan Fire 

California Interagency Incident Management Team 2 

Public Information Phone: 831-272-0222 

Incident E-mail: 

Incident Website:

Incident Information

Basic Information

Current as of8/23/2020, 10:09:04 PM
Incident TypeWildfire
Date of OriginTuesday August 18th, 2020 approx. 08:15 PM
LocationHighway 1(MM 32.20) North of Limekiln State Park, 10 miles South of Big Sur
Incident CommanderUSFS Mike Minton, ICT1 Big Sur FD Matt Harris, UIC
Incident DescriptionWildfire
Coordinates36.123 latitude, -121.602 longitude 

Current Situation

Total Personnel579
Size19,287 Acres
Percent of Perimeter Contained10%
Estimated Containment DateWednesday September 02nd, 2020 approx. 12:00 AM
Fuels InvolvedChaparral (6 feet)Brush (2 feet)Timber (Grass and Understory)
Significant EventsActive Flanking Short Crown Runs Backing


Planned ActionsCrews in all divisions will continue to verify location, scout for opportunities to construct direct/indirect control lines, and evaluate need for point protection and structure defense. 
Projected Incident ActivityFire is burning on private land, the Los Padres National Forest Ventana wilderness. Fire is taking advantage of slope driven runs and dry fuel, moving up and down canyons, spotting and making erratic runs, fire movement in all directions, ie. west, south, north, and east. Area tends to burn actively in the evening hours driven by mid slope thermal weather activity. Concern that the smoke inversion will lift and the fire activity will increase. Predicted thunderstorms with high potential for extreme fire behavior due to outflow winds.

Current Weather

Weather ConcernsMostly cloudy conditions prevailed across the incident as moisture from former Hurricane Genevieve streamed over the area. There were no thunderstorms or rain reported this afternoon. With the cloud cover, temperatures were a bit cooler and relative humidity was higher. A RED FLAG WARNING remained in effect due to the potential for dry thunderstorms. For tonight and Monday, the threat of dry thunderstorms will continue. So, the RED FLAG WARNING remains in effect until 500 PM Monday. At this time, the best chances for any thunderstorm development will be tonight and Monday morning. 

Recent Articles

Dolan Fire Evening Update, August 23, 2020News – 27 min. agoPronóstico de Humo para 23/08 – 24/08News – 8 hrs. agoCentral Coast Fires Smoke Outlook, August 23 and 24News – 13 hrs. agoDolan Fire AM Update, August 23,2020News – 14 hrs. ago

Related Links

Incident Cooperators


Reports from the front lines are the Hermitage is still intact. The fire was “losing steam as it got closer.” (Brendon) CHP reported last night:

8:20 PM10[22] [Notification] [CHP]-[20] 27-D5 FIRE STARTING DOWN HILL AT LUCIA / ABOUT 200 YDS FROM ROAD / THEY ARE C4 W/ FIRE

And I have photos sent to me this am I will be posted shortly in a separate post.


Maps will be posted here on this post when I get them.

John Chesnut map


Dolan Fire Update AUGUST 23, 2020 8:00 AM
Public Information Phone: (831) 272-0222
Media Information Phone: (831) 272-0221 Incident E-mail:
Incident Website:
Incident Information:
Start / Report Date: Aug. 18, 2020 Cause: Unknown
Fuels Involved: Chaparral, Brush, Timber understory
Hand Crews: 8 Engines: 31 Dozers: 6
Current Situation:
Los Padres National Forest: Facebook: Twitter:
Big Sur FD:
Size: 19,287
Location: Hwy 1(MM32.20) N of Limekiln State Park, 10 miles S of Big Sur
Helicopters: 4 Fixed wing: 1 Water Tenders: 6
Containment: 10% Injuries: 0
Total Personnel: 488
A Red Flag Warning is in effect today till 5:00 p.m. due to the combination of strong winds, low relative humidity and warm temperatures that will contribute to extreme fire behavior. Thunderstorms with little to no precipitation are possible and will be accompanied by erratic and gusty outflow winds between 30 and 65 mph across the fire area.
The fire remained active overnight, primarily with backing fire. Fire activity moderated in the early morning hours as humidity increased. Crews continued to focus on point protection operations around Hermitage and Lucia to the South and Partington Ridge and Anderson Peak communications infrastructure to the North. The community of South Coast was secured.
An infrared equipped aircraft flew a mapping flight over the fire yesterday afternoon. This data was used to revise the perimeter and was the primary reason for the increase in acreage.
Today, operations will continue to focus on point protection as well as scouting for locations to build direct and indirect fire line using both heavy equipment and hand crews. Crews will also be checking the North Coast Ridge Road and working out any hotspots near the road. As the fire continues to burn along the eastern side of Highway 1, engines and crews continue will patrol and extinguish spot fires that are occurring across the highway. Winds are predicted to shift from predominantly north northwest to south southeast. This change in wind direction will shift the area of highest fire activity from the south end to the north end of the Dolan Fire.
Smoke will continue to impact air operations around the fire, limiting aircraft availability and effectiveness. When air quality and visibility improve, aviation assets including helicopters, will support crews on the ground.

The incident management team will be moving into a new incident command post today at Big Sur Pfeiffer State Park. The move is expected to take most of the day so there will not be a Facebook Live meeting. Information for the next Facebook Live meeting will be posted on Inciweb and shared through our daily update.
The fire is threatening the communities of Hermitage, Partington Ridge, and Lucia. Multiple businesses, communications sites, parks and recreational sites are also threatened. Among natural resources threatened are the Ventana Wilderness and coastal watershed and habitat for threatened and endangered species, including the California condor.
Fire activity in the western United States has caused a high demand for fire personnel and equipment. The nation is in Preparedness Level 5 (PL5), the highest level. In PL5 over 80% of the nation’s incident management teams and wildland firefighting personnel are committed to incidents. Resource orders are being prioritized to fires across California and the west. Acreage reported here is an estimate and will be updated when IR images are available.
Carmel Fire Info: River Fire Info:
Updates and Meetings: Fire Information is producing two daily written updates. To request an update, email and provide your email address. A daily video update will be posted to the Los Padres National Forest Facebook page and Inciweb (See links in header).
Weather: A Red Flag Warning is in effect over the fire area for thunderstorms, dry lightning and gusty outflow winds.
Evacuations / Closures: Click here for an interactive map of Monterey County evacuations.
The closure of Highway 1 has changed. The highway is now closed near mile marker 38/Troy Canyon on the north and Hermitage on the south.
Smoke: The Monterey Bay Air Resources District has issued a Wildfire Air Quality Advisory.
Alert Monterey County: To receive emergency notifications regarding evacuations and critical events in Monterey County please sign up for A!ert Monterey County at the following website.
Cooperating and Assisting Organizations: National Weather Service, California Highway Patrol, Monterey County Sheriff’s Department, Big Sur Volunteers, Cal Trans, California State Parks, OES, Ventana Wilderness Alliance
Safety Message: This will be a long duration event. Residents in the affected area are encouraged to continue to prepare for the possibility of fire in their area in advance. Go to to learn how to prepare.
concentration of smoke has reached UNHEALTHY levels of the AQI, residents should limit their activity by
When the
stayingindoorswiththedoorsandwindowsclosedtoavoidbreathingsmoke. Updatesonthecurrentair
quality forecast and Air Monitoring data can be found at



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

Central Coast Smoke Outlook

Chance of incoming thunderstorms may increase fire behavior and produce more smoke but expect greater movement and dispersion of smoke with increase wind speeds. Areas south of the fires may see some improved air quality due predicted south winds.

4 thoughts on “Dolan Fire, Day 6, 8/23/20

  1. Fog blowing in the windows on North Coast Ridge Rd, cleaning smoke from the air. At 2800 ft, it’s very unusual to have fog up here on August. Maybe the wind will feed the fire, hoping the moisture can dampen the force of the flames.

  2. It’s over already, but it was awesome to open the house to clean air. I meant to convey that maybe those gusts of wind with the fog might give oxygen to the fire, not as a good thing, but I was also hoping there was enough wet fog in that cloud to have positive impact. Don’t know, maybe it interfered with any burn operations that are happening at the top of the ridges. You never know. Still, it was so great to feel like we lived by the seashore for ten minutes!

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