It’s heating up in California!

… in Sacramento, where the legislators battle it out over the “No IOUs” bill …

… in Reno, where, south of which, a new fire broke out this afternoon, called Eastlake. They called for the evacuation of the homes in the area …

… and in Klamath NF, where the Sims fire, which began yesterday was making a run this afternoon …

… and a brand-new one off of Highway 41 and Road 207 but it looks like they got that one down fast!

Whew! I think I’ll head to my cyber meditation space, now!

State Park Rally next Sunday

Save Our State Parks
Rally Party in Big Sur
June 21 Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park

Join us Sunday June 21 beginning at 2 pm for great speeches, readings and the fabulously wonderful singing of Alisa Fineman, the much beloved recording artist. She is not to be missed !
We need volunteers and sponsors.
If you want to help please reply to:
CalParksAdvocacy@PelicanNetwork.net
or call Jack at 831 667 2025

You are invited to participate. Bring the whole family – Food will be available. The event is free. But there is a per-car fee for entering the park – that buys an all day pass for all state parks on the coast from Point Lobos State Reserve to Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park.

ED NOTE: THIS ALSO MARKS THE DATE THE GALLERY/BASIN FIRE STARTED ONE YEAR AGO. GREAT EXCUSE FOR A PARTY!

Early June weather

Just a heads-up for those under the fog who haven’t noticed the increased cloud cover. Starting tonight, Tuesday, June 2nd, there is a 20% chance of showers, increasing to 50% by Thursday night through Friday. Would be nice to cut through some of this dust, and give some of our thirsty hills a drink. Let’s hope, anyway.

Last Night’s Rain Totals

Last night (5/1) brought a significant amount of rain. 1.0″ for the day and evening, bringing the season total to 34.75″. I hear rumors of only a slight chance (30%) of rain today (good for the Wildflower Party at the Big Sur Lodge), and the same for tomorrow. 

Oh, and Dakota is doing well. Recovering more each day.

Have a good weekend, everyone.

State Park & Bridge Update, 4/18/09

Bidding for the installation of a temporary Bailey Bridge closed yesterday, 4/17. Part of the required bidding process was a guarantee that the installation would be completed within 30 days of the awarding of the contract.

Current speculation regarding how camping reservations will be handled for the summer traffic at the Big Sur State Park is that it will be on a first-come, first-serve basis, starting the day the bridge opens. The Bailey Bridge will be one lane, controlled by a signal light.

The closure of the State Park is putting a burden on the remaining campsites, which down here on the South Coast are filled *beyond* capacity. That, in turn, is leading to camping in undeveloped areas of the forest. As XT points out, the closure of much of USFS (and state) lands in Big Sur, due to the 2008 fires, has lead to additional stress on the unburned and highly vulnerable areas of the Los Padres National Forest. This is a lose-lose situation.

Temporary Bridge for State Park?

Article in Today’s Monterey Herald indicates that the state MAY be erecting a temporary bridge so that it can open for Memorial Day weekend. This is part of that article:

“It’s only temporary, but Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park could have a new bridge in time for the influx of summer campers.

The temporary structure is similar to the one that provided temporary crossing over the Carmel River in 1995 when heavy rains caused the permanent Highway 1 bridge to wash out, said Ken Gray, services manager for States Parks Monterey district.

‘Our goal is to get the campground open by Memorial Day,’ Gray said. ‘We are still doing the planning for (the temporary bridge). There’s no guarantees, but that’s our goal.'”

Sounds like the temporary solution, a “Bailey” bridge, is one that Sam Farr has been pushing. Let’s hope it is in place next month. It will only be one lane, and therefore subject to traffic control, but it is better than what is there now — nothing. This could be good news for the Big Sur business community. It is not a done deal, yet, but hopefully heading in that direction.

CT News Release, South Coast

Today’s Date: Friday, April 10, 2009

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 

DRAINAGE IMPROVEMENT ON HWY. 1 JUST SOUTH OF LIMEKILN CREEK BRIDGE

 

BIG SUR – The project consists of a drainage improvement on Hwy. 1, just south of Limekiln Creek Bridge for two weeks starting Monday, April 13, Caltrans officials today announced.

Work consists of one-way reversing traffic control with flaggers and work hours are Mondays through Thursdays from 8 am to 4 pm and from 8 am to 2 pm on Fridays. Up to 15 minute delays can be anticipated. Work is scheduled to be complete in early May, weather permitting.

An existing drainage cross culvert, which outlets over the bluff, will be abandoned and a new replacement system is to be installed, draining in a more suitable location.

 

Storm Watch, 4/9/09

As of 11:00 pm, we never did get any rain down here on the South Coast of Big Sur. The radar images on the news tonight (out of Bakersfield, of all places) had the rain going east from Monterey, not south.

3:00 pm – Nothing up here, yet, in fact, a bit of sun, but here are some photos sent to me by Jo-Ann Allison. First, the now infamous car in the culvert, from the Highway One side. It appears to have washed down from the parking lot in the debris flow. Whoever owns this car, has lots of photos for his or her insurance company:

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And this one shows the line of cars, both in front of, and behind Jo-Ann, trying to get through Highway One, on Tuesday, around noon, BEFORE the slide completely shut it down later that afternoon. Also note the fence at the Lodge which was partially taken out.

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And here is one, again from the Highway and Jo-Ann’s car, showing how the parking lot and the Highway were “one” with each other, thanks to the mud. It also shows the loss of parts of the fence. (okay, there WILL be one, maybe, below.)

 

Rain likely later today. For now, up here anyway, overcast, foggy, and dismal. Matches the mood of my cold perfectly. Another day to try to stay warm, dry, and inside. I’ve been promised more photos this afternoon.

Photos of the mudslide

Tuesday afternoon saw another blow to the Big Sur State Park, who has suffered set-back after set back toward its goal to open by Memorial Day.  I think Mother Nature is telling us she is not ready for millions of visitors to her scarred and healing hills. When she tries to tell us gently, we sometimes don’t hear her, so she has to YELL to be heard.

These photos by Rain Greenslate, Chief of Maintenance Big Sur tell the story so well. She and Jo-ann are sending more tomorrow. Thanks ladies for sharing these with us and I will post as many of them tonight as I can, and more tomorrow!!

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