After Rock Knocker talked to the tourists heading to Treebones, we headed south on South Coast Ridge Rd. At the very first blockage, our neighbor and friend, Peter, came up behind us. They could have both gotten under these trees, but I was too tall. Peter drove 3 miles past his own turn to see us all the way to our back gate. What a guy! Inside the gate, the top of a dead pine came down. I’ll just let the photos speak for themselves.
I sat in the parking lot of Denny’s, using my iPad to constantly check the CHP website. The last posting was that CHP was trying to figure out whether the USFS or FHL Fire would be able to clear it. I watched the site like a hawk, and answered some emails, and PMs and DMs, etc. and while I waited. After about an hour, as I was typing a message, it occurred to me that I could call FHL Fire and find out, so I did. I headed out to the west.
I saw Rock Knocker on the road and we stopped. He needed gas and propane, so we ran back into King City for his supplies, and so he could grab a quick bite at Burger King, and then we were back on the road again, and I was able to get my shoulders down from my ears, where they had been “perched” for days due to stress & anxiety.
We caravaned across FHL. This is the Nacimiento River (apparently it is the San Antonio River – I have been incorrect all these years?) at full steam. Love that view!
After we crossed into the Los Padres National Forest, when the road follows the river, RK stopped at one point to ask me to keep up. I was trying, really, but that Sprinter is a big thing. Because I was “trying to keep up” I couldn’t stop to get a couple photos I wanted of waterfalls coming right out of the rocks and flowing across the road. It was both amazing and alarming!
Finally, at about 3 pm, we got to South Coast Ridge Road. A BMW behind us stopped at the intersection in confusion, seeing us turn onto the dirt, so RK stopped, got out, and went to speak with them. They were on their way to Treebones. See, John Handy? I told you that those seeking out your place would still be coming, even with the road closures.
Anyway, they went on their way. RK and I switched to High Range 4×4 and proceeded on… (to be continued.)
Big Sur residents and those living between the Paul’s Slide and Mud Creek closures: please be aware that there is a tree down on Nacimiento Fergusson Rd near Coast Ridge road. County Public Works crews stationed in San Ardo are mobilizing tonight to clear the road and will make every effort as long as it is safe to do so.
MCSO responded to reports of a shooting 5.5 miles up Nacimiento from Highway One. (Near Summit) They gave chase to the shooter, and lost him. A helicopter assisted in the search and came right by my house down Prewitt Loop but was lower than my house. The suspect was eventually caught on San Miguelito Loop, over by the Mission on FHL. They retrieved the pump action shotgun and EMS was ordered from FHL, as well as a life-flight. Victim drove himself past the med 24 and ended up at Post Ranch. (This report put together with help from Jim Kimball who sent reports from scanner.) The victim is Peter Harris, USFS. From his wife:
Local historian Valance Heinsen has chronicled the growth of Jolon, noting that it had its beginnings as a home remodeled to an inn as early as 1850, then further remodeled to the two-story Dutton Hotel in 1876. A Chinese population attracted to mining ventures in the area operated a laundry in Jolon in the 1850s. The village experienced a growth spurt with Dutton’s remodeling of the inn, and a dance hall and community church were added between 1876 and 1879. A community hall, school, granary, and several new houses were constructed by 1888. Several large horse barns and a smithy were added in the early 1890s, along with a detached post office and a telephone office. Several farmers moved into town in the 1890s, further expanding the population and offsetting losses brought about by the closing of the Los Burros mines.
The coastal regions of southern Monterey County were isolated from settled regions to the north (Big Sur) and south (Cambria) because of the precipitous terrain, and were more closely tied to commercial and social affairs of the San Antonio Valley-Jolon-Lockwood area than to other coastal communities. A mail road, actually a horse trail, led from Jolon through present day Fort Hunter Liggett lands to the Santa Lucia divide, where several trails led down to the coast or to the mining camps in the mountains. Settlers from the Lucia area and south to Pacific Valley followed trails over the mountains that rendezvoused at Wagon Cave (CA-MNT-307) on the San Antonio River, where horseback travelers switched to wagons stored there for the purpose of hauling provisions from King City and Jolon.
Yesterday, the trip down Nacimiento was even more perilous than usual. I was just so glad Rock Knocker was driving. First were a string of 4 Super 10 trucks, fully loaded, without a guide vehicle; then there were two tractor trailer rigs, we had to back way up because they couldn’t make the corner without using the whole frigging road; then there was a regular 10 yard followed by the propane delivery in his regular rig. It was quite the experience. Of course, coming home we had to be on the look out for the return of these same vehicles. The first were the 4 Super 10 trucks, they were early and we were still in the flats along the river. We stopped and talked to the propane guy, and even HE is worried about that little bridge (time for me to call again, since I never got the report on the last inspection). After that, we were about 1/2 way up to the summit and Rock Knocker yelled, “There they are.” I hadn’t seen them, but he had – the tractor trailer rigs without a lead car. Rock Knocker had to back up, down hill, with me completely on the edge – and as afraid of heights as I am, that was no fun a’tall.
At least we don’t have a Harvey or an Irma or the floods in Bangladesh and the wildfires of Montana, Idaho, Oregon, Washington, and No Cal, right? I think Mother Nature is fed up with us all over the world, not just here in Big Sur. If this is any precursor of the winter ahead, we are in deep doodoo.
First off, let me thank and congratulate the USFS and the MCSO. There were NO campers late Saturday morning in ANY turnout on Nacimiento Road. We saw only this one tent, well off the road, and the corresponding car in a small dirt turn out. Rock Knocker thinks it was within the 300 ft. Limit, but I’m not so sure.
Before we got to this point, there was a truck pulling a travel trailer that stopped in the middle of Nacimiento Rd. Just befor the Ranger Station on the east side of Nacimiento. He was fixing his chain, his lights, his trailer brakes or something. To his credit, he did stop by a turn out that allowed others to get by – barely on his read end, but all but large trucks could get by.
And then, up Plaskett – a large group camping at Turkey Flats who were putting out a campfire at 11:50 am. We stopped and told them of the $5000 fine, and they laughed and continued drinking their beer. Note the shovel in the guy’s hands.
And the open beer cans on the log
And the case of beer for later
Rock Knocker got photos of all the license plate numbers, since they were on his side.
I called PV Station and sent emails to my USFS neighbors. They will be having another campfire tonight unless they are stopped and cited, which I am hoping they will be.
The paperwork has been completed to ban dispersed camping along Nacimiento-Fergusson Rd. It is currently out of the district for review before it comes back for signature. We won’t know for sure how long it will be banned until the order comes back into the district. It is not in effect until signed, but it is a very good step.