There's a sign on the highway and a plaque at the Rim of the World overlook, naming this section of 120 the "Eva Marie Schicke memorial highway".
This video describes the 2004 accident where she died - the location was close to where the current fire is.
Did this fire start yesterday afternoon. I thought I saw a distinct column of smoke driving out north of town around 2:00 or so. Then I wwnt to where I could take a shot of it and the T clouds swallowed it and I could not see it again.
My eyes may have played tricks with me, but I know a smoke column when I see it.
Bump since I would have been home a couple of hours earlier tonight had I known. Didn't find out until the Tioga Pass gate, no warnings, nothing on the radio, nada. I opted for SPH 108, it was looking pretty smokey to the south.
October 5, 1988: "Patsy Hamm will always remember the day the Smith Peak Forest Lookout burned to the ground.
The lookout burned Aug. 31, 1987, in the Stanislaus Complex Fires that destroyed 147,095 acres in Tuolumne and Mariposa counties. A wood frame building atop a metal two-story tower, the lookout burned within a couple hours of when Hamm abandoned it about 1 p.m.
Now, rising like a Phoenix out of the ashes, the lookout has been rebuilt and is nearly ready for use again in the Groveland Ranger District of the Stanislaus National Forest." (Merced Sun-Star)
This is the fire I remember. Jeff was photographed as a long-haired evacuee on the porch of the Buck Meadows store and it was published in the local firestarter.
Credit: mouse from merced
Smith Peak:Groveland Ranger District, 3,877' elevation.y 1910, Smith Peak, two miles from the Groveland Ranger Station, was used as a fire lookout. Smith Peak was selected as an administrative site in 1931, and soon after a wooden lookout tower was built. In 1952, a metal lookout tower was constructed, along with a garage. The tower burned down in the 1987 Stanislaus Complex Fire, and was replaced in 1988. Smith Peak is used every summer as one of the two staffed fire lookouts on the Groveland District. Photo: 1943.
Then there was the complex fire which came down to the back doors of El Portal in the next few years.
Hey khanom - check out the map I linked above. It's kept fairly up to date. The perimeter is still east of Ferretti, but it's getting close, looks like a few hotspots are heating up. Current screenshot:
Missing photo ID#317005
The ranger station complex and town of Buck Meadows are hanging on the edge. Wishing you the best of luck.
The 3 pm update.
This thing is still spreading primarily east and southeast.
The separation of the hot zones seems to indicate there are a lot of wind blown embers traveling east and southeast.
In the last few hours this fire seems to have spread out somewhat but has not gotten worse in intensity overall.
Good luck to the firefighters.And to local residents.
Ward, which website are you going to for that map? It is actually the most updated map I have seen. The Inciweb map is old as is the willandfire.maps.arcgis map.
So far things around here are OK. I live at the Evergreen Lodge and while there is a little bit of smoke in the air, we are not evacuated and I think it is unlikely the fire will make it this far. Regardless, we are prepared to evacuate at a moments notice. San Jose Camp, Camp Tawonga and Camp Mather are currently evacuated.
Let's see how this goes. Good luck on your end Eric.
Sorry, khanom - no offense intended. Just trying to be helpful. Last night all the info I had was "Tioga Road Closed" written in Sharpie on an 8x11 piece of paper. I don't own any property near there but I'm bummed, I really like that area.
Saw this thing starting on Sunday evening while driving back home from Bridgeport. It was already night. Closest thing that I've seen to Mordor in my life. Glad that we got through before the road was closed. Good luck to those near it.
Munge, still no cell service up here so no text will arrive. The smoke isn't bad although just in the past hour we have had the wind shift and are getting more smoke now.
So far the fire seems to have stalled today. It exploded over night from 1000 acres to 10,000. Hopefully it sleeps tonight and gives the fire guys some time to get lines arranged.
For us here at the Lodge, this one is still no where near as bad as the one at Early Intake in 2005 or 2006. You couldn't see 100' in front of you and it was raining ash. As the crow flies that one was about 3 miles away.
By contrast this fire is about 6 or 7 miles as the crow flies with plenty of roads and potential fire lines between us and the fire. I am fairly confident the Lodge will be just fine.
Unfortunately it looks like Liliskoog Lodge is having a bad time of it. Don't think it was burned down but the fire went right over the top of it. Keeping my fingers crossed for those folks.
Time to serve dinner to the guests. I'll let you guys know if anything changes later tonight.
hey there say, khanom... i just realized something...
i had an address for you that was not calif...
did you move, or, is this an areas you are in and staying, due to work?
if you move, oh my, hope your place will be okay, :O
hope all is going to be well,for everyone...
very sad the fire got bigger so fast, :O
will be praying for all the folks and fighters...
my brother matt is up, somewhere in the 'them there hills'
and last i heard he was going to evergreen lodge...
ps, for strider:
(heard from our mom, last night... if i hear from you strider,
i will not need to call her, again, tonight)...
The "recommended evacuation" of Camp Tawonga, Sawmill Mtn rd, Spinning Wheel and Hardin flat rd. turned into a hard evacuation. So far that is all that has changed. On our end of the fire (the opposite side from khanom) which I will call the north-east flank has made a little progress toward us but not much. The south flank of the fire appears to be where the action is. This includes Hardin Flat rd and Pilot Ridge. A lot of hot spots in that direction. I have no real information on the West (Groveland/Ferretti) & Southwest (Smith Station/Greely Hill) flank. Nobody gives a crap about the North flank of the fire since there is nothing there of human importance (although I would HATE to see the forest gone up there, beautiful country).
Evergreen is still open for business but again, we are just awaiting the word to evac. And the decision to stay open has nothing to do with money and everything to do with taking care of our guests and employees who have nowhere else to go. There are ~375 people here tonight and a reactionary evac would serve no useful purpose in my eyes. PLEASE understand, these are my opinions and not that of my employer.
neebee, last I heard (about an hour ago) your brother is safe but Sawmill mtn has been evacuated. The confirmed sighting of him was that he was driving his truck, horse hitched to the back, leaving his house. Safe and sound.
Wow this beast has expanded in every direction since the last time I looked, especially north and northeast.
It's starting to look real nasty.
Hopefully the weather and suppression efforts can get a handle on this thing tomorrow.
Communities along Ferretti Road from Highway 120 to Clements Road, Highway 120 at Cherry Lake Road west to Smith Station, Sawmill and Spinning Wheel campgrounds and Tawonga Camp have been evacuated. Evacuation centers are at the Sonora Fairgrounds and Greeley Hill Community Center.
i am going to try to call matt in a few hours, as, it is still early there, however, i'm sure he is up...
will call my folks if i don't get hold of him, just for more info that he may have had, and is getting, as to his area, and he evergreen lodge, area, as well... they said he might? head in that direction, but then
nick may have seen him, as he was moving on elsewhere, too--will find out...
i am just wondering, now, how it is going, just the above post on
that it is spreading northeast, now...
prayers, for all, and for safety of firefighters...
thanks for sharing, melissa...
The Rim Fire is looking a lot better today. Some of the hot areas are showing a downgrade to cooler, less active orange and yellow.
The overall area has not expanded that rapidly .
Looks better than late yesterday, at least form a few hundred miles up.
Lets hope it stays on a downward trend.
They always look better in the am. Peak burning time is around 2:00 pm.
True. But it's my guess, baring unlucky shifting factors, that they're getting a handle on this demon.
We'll know by late this afternoon whether it is going to lay down or not. At least for the near term.
Btw this thing looked somewhat worse in the earlier AM, about 12 hrs ago:
An Advisory Evacuation for all of Pine Mountain Lake has been issued.
--from InciWeb, over 30 mins. ago.
Jeff and I just talked and Denny's house is OK. Her mom lives just up the hill from there--so they all know about the evacuation advisory--and there were authorities going up and down the streets contacting all residents yesterday.
the Rev said that unless there's a shift in wind, his Camp Runamucka should be safe as rain.
very sad to hear this... as to the worse and historic...
glad to hear the sawmill mt rd, may be okay then...
oh, my, :O if i was closer, nick, you could stay here,
prayers even harder now, for evergreen, all the folks, and
hope you will be well, and the ranch area, khanom...
say, nick, can you put a taco post up, and let folks here know, that you may need a place to stay??
someone well known by all, nearby, may be able to???
dear lord, please help my friends, :O
i sure do not like that word "historic" :(
you are not forgotten, even if many of us are just not
there to help...
This is not good. The hotspots appear to have jumped Ferretti Road on the west and are approaching Hardin Flat Road on the east flank (Berkeley Camp). To the northeast, they're now about halfway to Cherry Lake.
It poured rain on our attempt at Sun Ribbon yesterday and today. Also rained almost the whole way home from Bishop to Topaz.
There was a very healthy south -> north flow of precip with not that much lightning. Is none of that moisture landing on the west side of the crest?
bergbryce - that rain on the eastside has been steady since Sunday. Despite flash flood warnings, it never made it to where it was needed in the west. Moreover there was a ton of lightning earlier in the week, it set off a bunch of fires in Sequoia National Forest, many are still burning as resources are stretched thin.
Tropical depression forming south of Baja, but expected to move north early next week, and settling over SE California Sunday /Monday. Hopefully, some of that moisture moves north.
Enough rainfall is expected in the deserts that they are warning of flash floods.
there were big fires back there in '73 and again in 87. but each had a different coverage area. granite basin burned in '73.
judging from this morning's maps, it burned again yesterday. if it heads up the clavey, there's basically nothing to stop it. the fuel loads back there are insane, and there's no good basing territory for the northern perimeter.
I'm trying to understand the map. What do the MODUS-thermal dots mean? Why are there so many outside of what is marked as the "fire perimeter"?
the map is an approximation of several moments in time that represents heat intensity. you can never see a single fire "line" from above, partly because of the smoke plume but also because a fire like this isn't defined by a single, unified edge.
the fire advances in large part by downdrafts of superheated air and burning material dropping into unburned fuels around the fire's outskirts.
the "line" in many places will be a messy patchwork of burned and unburned fuels, with new fires constantly spring up, some as small as a single manazanita bush, others a few acres, and each of them at some kind of threat for becoming an advance edge of the main body.
since the thing jumped the road, folks have been out there on the ground frickin gunnysacking, trying to extinguish the smaller advance fires.
unreal dangerous. chaotic on the actual ground, with the smoke and terrain. and a fire this large will create its own winds, often unpredictable.
once it jumped the road, there was basically a clear path of heavy fuel to pine mt. lake.
if pine mt. is still there tomorrow morning, it'll be partly because we got really lucky with the winds and weather, and partly because folks on the ground are out there working in hell right now.
Wow, this thing is really looking mean.
30+ hrs. ago I thought there might be a chance of getting this thing under some control by the weekend. My guess was wrong.
To residents and firefighters--good luck, stay safe, and watch for embers.
Credit: Ward Trotter
In CA and the entire west, firefighting resources are currently stretched thin. I think this is part of the problem here.
Was talking with a CalFire chief Tues night.
The MODIS imagery is from the 2 MODIS satellites. Shows fire, vegetation, smoke, snow etc.
It's somewhat over sensitive. Can show a few "hotspots" that don't exist. CalFire flies over them in a spotter plane to check. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moderate-Resolution_Imaging_Spectroradiometer
I think it makes two passes a day in daylight.
There's also an experimental satellite that shows lightning strikes both cloud to cloud and cloud to earth. CalFire subscribes to that data as well. The Monday night lightning storm here in the SCruz mtns produced a large number of satellite observed "strikes" to ground. CalFire found and extinguished 2 or 3 fires on the ground and then Tues AM overflew this entire area to be sure there was nothing else.
The Rim fire has transitioned into unified command with Cal Fire and Forest Service on August 21 at 2:00 p.m.
Fire continues its eastward spread along Packerd Canyon Road and Pilot Ridge. Structure defense continues for San Jose Camp, Spinning Wheel and Tawonga Camp as the fire moves up the middle fork of the Tuolumne.
The fire continues to spread northwest burning past Butcher Knife Ridge and moving into Grapevine Creek; northeast up the Tuolumne River Drainage from the Gravel Range past Jones Point Lookout; and continue to spread southeast edge along Hwy 120 to the east.
Firing operations have begun on Ferretti Rd. as the fire progress west towards the community of Pine Mountain Lake. Direct suppression methods have been successful.
The availability of fixed wing air craft is pertinent to the success of suppression operations. The use of Maffs C-130s and the V-LAT DC-10 has greatly improved suppression efforts. Use of Military Rotary wing aircraft continues today.
In the next 24 hours the fire is expected to continue up the Tuolumne River canyon, and continue its spread to the north and east.
Due to inaccessible, steep terrain and active fire behavior a combination of direct and indirect attack will be used on this incident. Direct line suppression efforts are impeded by difficult access and steep inaccessible terrain. Active fire behavior today raises safety concerns for crews adjacent to the fire’s edge. Smoke exposure within the deep drainage of the Clavey River will be an issue for fire crews as well.
Not looking good. At least they seem to be holding it at Ferreti Rd. Everything north and east seems at risk.
54,000 acres and 2% containment.
Not much new info so far. The fire seems to have stayed away from Hardin Flat rd so far. Sawmill was overrun but last I heard only a few out buildings were lost, no mention if homes destroyed. Tawonga was also over run but also no update on structure damage there. Still several miles from evergreen lodge and Mather. Report from a PG&E worker that 40 some odd poles are down so electricity will be a while coming.
neebee, I wish I had more to tell you about Matt but last I heard he was headed out with his horse. The direction he was going has plenty of exit routes so I am sure he is safe.
Any word on how this started? Inciweb just says "under investigation"...you guys hear anything else?
Based on the fact it started on The Clavey River not far from the confluence with the T, I have friends that suspect it was paddlers who spent the night at Clavey Rapid. That is likely one of the most camped at spots on the river.
But I did hear that it may have started higher on Clavey Ridge, so maybe lightning caused? It could have been smoldering for days or even a week before it went up.
Neebee. Earlier I had thought our friends Bill and Lauren had evacuated from upper end of Hardin Flat but was emailed that they only evacuated their animals and are still there at their B&B, The Sunset Inn.
I hear they have lost power and are on back up generator and the fire is three miles away. Hopefully Matt is close by them. If they have to leave then they and Matt will be driving into Yosemite.
hey there say, timid... i just got back on line, after calling my folks...
they heard this same info from mark:
that i just heard...
say, it DOES match what you said, my email from just a bit agao said that he was with the nichols... is THIS the same folks you mentioned, and yes, it was at sunset inn... so i know he is safe then... and with dear horse...
please keep in touch, on this... thanks so very kindly and soooooo very much, dear andy!!!!!
praying and crying for all the folks... i love for folks to have their homes and families, so this always makes me sad... and for the firefighters...
they did NOT have to chose this line of work... WHAT IF none, ever did...
we are so indebted to folks that chose this work, and god watch over them, amen...
If reports on twitter are to be believed the area just east of and adjacent to PML airport and Unit 12 of PML (if that's different) are being mandatorily evacuated. The airport's east-northeast facing webcam seems to refresh every 15min
Don't know if this link has been added yet.. http://wlfhotlist.com/threads/36507-CA-STF-Rim/page10 Some cool News Helicopter stuff and a great resource for alot of other fire info too. The nation is on Level 5 and Fire Resources are just strapped all over. I'm not sure in my 10 years of fire that I have seen it at that level!
This thing is now starting to expand to the west and NW and continuing North and NE.
Tomorrow's winds are forecast to be out of the SSW at 5-10 mph. Not good for the northern flank.
The winds have been shifting around quite a bit the last few days. Not good. And probably a large part of the problem for firefighters.
Credit: Ward Trotter
Props and respect to the hard working firefighting crews on this difficult fire.
We know you are in harms way and we greatly appreciate your efforts. Stay safe.
2500 structures threatened.
In a sparsely populated area, that's going to take a huge effort.
Awesome DC-10 pic. Thank Gov Jerry for committing to a season long lease for that beast early in the year. It's not exclusively for California but at least we have a new contract (the Legislature canceled last year). http://www.10tanker.com/the-plane.html
We're following along in the east (Raleigh, NC). We send our prayers for the safety the crew and civilians.
Those smoke plumes are colossal. We get storms that come up from South Carolina that track NE and parallel the Atlantic shore about 100miles in. The city of Wilson, NC gets their ass handed to them when they arrive. We can see the cloud plumes all the way in Raleigh and we're about 50 miles away. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cumulonimbus
I watched that Eva Marie Schicke video. Tragic. I watched an aerial battle with fire in Tuolumne Grove while hanging off the side of North Dome for 2 weeks in 06. I had no idea the danger and effort that went fire fighting in mountainous terrain.
Wow! Amazing that there are DC-10's still in the air!
I posted this on May 6 on a different fire thread, but it seems worthy of posting again given the recent conditions. The article touches on some of the challenges fire managers are facing this year.
**California Girds for Severe Fire Season as Dry Lands Burn
By Michael B. Marois - 2013-05-06T04:00:01Z
Californians are preparing for a prolonged season of wildfires after an unusually dry winter that left millions of acres of scrub brush in the most populous U.S. state primed to burn.
The tinder-box conditions have sparked more than 840 wildfires since January, about 320 more than the five-year average, according to the state Forestry and Fire Protection Department, known as Cal Fire. A fast-moving fire in Ventura County over the weekend charred an area the size of San Francisco, forced the evacuation of a college with 4,900 students and threatened 4,000 homes northwest of Los Angeles.
Wind-swept fires across the state following similarly dry winter months in 2008 burned more than 1.2 million acres and killed 13 firefighters, according to Cal Fire. In 2007, firestorms swept through Southern California, destroying 1,500 homes, displacing almost a million residents and killing 17.
“It’s pretty shocking that we are having fires of this size already,” said Bill Stewart, a professor of forest economics and policy with the University of California at Berkeley. “It could be a big one. I wouldn’t be surprised if we surpassed 2007.”
The California Department of Water Resources announced May 2 that the state’s snowpack was 17 percent of normal. January through March was the driest first quarter on record for the state, according to the California State Meteorologist.
The dangerous conditions come as automatic federal budget cuts called sequestration means the U.S. Forest Service has to cut its budget even though the agency expects this year’s fire season to match and or possibly exceed last year, when 9.3 million acres burned. Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell has said the cuts mean his agency will hire about 500 fewer seasonal firefighters than normal.
Governor Jerry Brown in 2011 signed a budget that reduced the number of firefighters assigned to each engine to three from four as a way save money and help erase what was then a $10 billion deficit. The move restored staffing levels on each truck to where they were before October 2003, when 14 separate massive firestorms scorched more than 750,000 acres, destroyed 1,700 homes and killed 24 people.
Brown told a panel of federal judges May 2 that one way he could comply with their order to reduce overcrowding in state prisons was to move 1,300 inmates to camps where they can be deployed to help on the fire lines. California currently has about 3,700 inmates in such camps.
More than 1,800 firefighters over the weekend battled a blaze known as the Springs Fire south of Camarillo in Ventura County. Strong Santa Ana winds spread the blaze to more than 43 square miles (111 square kilometers) before crews were able to stall its growth yesterday.
The fire, now mostly under control, had forced officials to evacuate California State University, Channel Islands, and close down portions of State Route 1, known as the Pacific Coast Highway. While no homes were destroyed, 15 were damaged, the Ventura Fire Department said.
Stewart said that even with the dry conditions, how long and often strong winds blow through the summer months will determine whether the state suffers the kinds of massive fires that struck in 2007 and 2008.
“It’s the high winds that really drives up the acreage and pushes the fires up into subdivisions,” he said. “We know we have dry fuel on the ground, we know it’s going to be warm, but what we don’t know yet is how often we are going to have winds.”
The National Weather Service had issued red flag warnings for most of Los Angeles and Ventura counties over the weekend because of the dry Santa Ana winds, which blow desert air toward the Pacific coast. The warning alerts area residents and firefighters that conditions are ideal for rapidly spreading wildfires.
Cal Fire has 4,700 full-time firefighters and foresters who are aided by another 8,700 seasonal and local workers. The state also uses prisoners to fight wildfires. The Corrections Department said 82 crews, consisting of 1,093 inmates and 97 guards, were assisting in battling 14 fires across the state.
“We have already seen a big increase in the number of fires that normally occur at this time of year, and summer hasn’t yet arrived,” Mark Ghilarducci, secretary of the California Emergency Management Agency, said in a statement.
Large wildfires aren’t limited to California. Colorado suffered its most destructive fire season last year, with dozens of blazes fueled by drought-ravaged grass and beetle-killed timber. Flames destroyed at least 600 homes and charred more than 116,000 acres. Damage was estimated at more than $450 million, with the Waldo Canyon blaze, which consumed entire neighborhoods in the foothills around Colorado Springs, becoming the most expensive fire in state history.
More than 153,000 acres have burned across the U.S. this year, though that’s half how much were scorched during the same period in 2012, according to the National Interagency Fire Center out of Boise, Idaho.
Looks like the wind has already shifted around to the SW. The separated red areas to the NE sometimes indicate wind blown hot spots.
This beast just keeps looking epochal
Sure would be cool if some rain fell. Not in the forecast. Although by Sat. the wind is backing off a bit. It will also be just a tad cooler Sun and Mon. We'll take what we can get.
12:30 am update
Credit: Ward Trotter
Man those western and NW flanks look scary getting close to Groveland.
My guess is that they are concentrating resources there and backing off the NE flank, relatively speaking.
Pretty lousy. It's getting hotter. By tomorrow, the perimeter will be redrawn, maybe 100,000 acres. Cherry and Eleanor lakes may be toast. Even worse, the hotspots are working up the north side of Hetch Hetchy. Forget beautiful wilderness, we're talking major infrastructure, like San Francisco's water supply.
To the NE, sooner or later it may hit granite and become containable. Today the scanners were buzzing about the NW, pre-painting the town of Tuolumne. Like a foregone conclusion it's in the path.
Better news towards the south. They saved the ranger station! Too bad about the forest. That's gonna look odd.
Shame about the playground but nature takes its course.
Did you hear from your brother yet?
How are things?
I got your email, but wanted to post here to let you know I am watching and concerned
Things are quiet out here along the Divide in Montana right now. I'm heading down to the Winds soon.
Everyone take care out there in YNP, hope the fire on both sides of 120 is out by now, or almost out. At least controlled. Anything that is progress. I remember when the Bitterroot burned out here, and the smoke columns and billowing of smoke was not a fierce looking as you have out there in YNP right now. G*d keep you all safe.
Neebs, I'll email you in a while when I get back from coffee and breakfast with friends from Sweden, who are cycling through today on their way to Kamloops.
Mouse, you and everyone out there take care. I hope you get lots of rain any minute. You guys are in my prayers. Take care. Be safe.
Neebs, much Love and fairy dustings for you.
if i lived in san francisco, i'd be stockpiling water. heth hetchy looks likely to burn, and no one knows if the system will be fully operational after. and everyone who lives over on the nearby 108 corridor ought to be prepared to bail on a moment's notice.
it now has a clear run up the canyon to tuolumne city, and give the way it's spotting now, that means that even phoenix lake and twain harte could become threatened in the next few days. i don't think it's likely, but we're entering a world in which no one can reliably model this fire's behavior.
this is not just another seasonal sierra fire.
this report gives a fairly current overview of the literature:
Mouse, tell yer Nat Guard friend to have his FMS system checked - I'm thinking
that lowering the gear wasn't gonna help much. The FMS systems I'm familiar
with are more helpful as the nice lady says...
Word for the day/week/month: Pyrocumulus/pyrocumulonimbus.
According to the Weather Guys--
A pyrocumulus cloud forms from rising air that results from intense heating of the surface by phenomena such as wildfires or volcanic eruptions. The fires that generate these clouds can be man-made or natural.
A big fire produces strong upward moving air currents that carry water vapor and ash upward. The water vapor can condense on the ash forming cloud drops. The vigorous upward motions produce these pyrocumulus clouds that look similar to thunderstorm clouds, which also form due to strong upward moving air. A pyrocumulus is a fire cloud.
In Latin, pyro means “fire” and cumulus means “pile up.” Cumulus is a type of cloud that is common in Wisconsin, particularly in summer. Cumulus clouds are those puffy-white clouds with tops that have a cauliflower appearance. Pyrocumulus clouds are grayish or brown in color because of the ashes and smoke of the fire. The tops of these clouds can reach as high as 30,000 feet. It is difficult to locate the bottom of a pyrocumulus cloud as it is often obscure by the ash generated by the fire or the volcanic eruption.
If lots of water vapor is available, the pyrocumulus can develop into a cumulonimbus, or thunderstorm. When a thundercloud forms, it is called pyrocumulonimbus. Like thunderstorms, pyrocumulonimbus can produce lightning because of the strong updrafts. Rain can also fall from these clouds, which could help extinguish the fire generating the cloud. Of course, the lightning might cause another fire.
The anvils haven't formed over these clouds we have been seeing the last several days, meaning the upper atmosphere, at around 30 thou, isn't sufficiently cold enough to cause an "inversion," or flattening out of the heated cloud vapor beneath a layer of much colder air, which cannot readily mix with the updrafts. Anvils are good things, to my mind. What saith the Taco's few resident expert Weathermen?
Maybe I was right and they concentrated resources to work on that western flank closest to Groveland yesterday into overnight --things look better there, for now.
Tonight the wind stays SW less than 5 mph and it will be marginally cooler. Good news .
The N and NE flanks are really opening up. Slight drop off in wind strength from SW could help there.
Credit: Ward Trotter
Saturday around midnight the winds shift to NE and NW...hopefully this won't mean the SE flank opening up, and making a run for the thickly wooded slopes in that direction.
Good thing about the NE is it looks like the beast might run out of things to eat up there. Less oxygen too.
Tuolumne evacuation? That sounds unrelated to the Rim Fire
Interesting Modis info overlaid on Google Earth
Rim fire Aug 19 boundary is bounded by red line. 23 Aug 11:45 AM PDT Modis overlay. Note that the yellow squares are old data and I presume are "out".
Note the info in the legend at top right.
MODIS data is from 11:45 PDT today. Yellow squares are effectively "out". The rest are still active.
All the way to Lake Eleanor? Looks as if it's not near Hetch Hetchy quite yet, although the HH power lines to SF have been down for a couple of days.
The evening of Aug 19 (red line fire boundary), I mentioned this fire to our local (Santa Cruz Mtns) CalFire camp Chief and he was more concerned about the big fire off Foresthill Rd near Auburn. He already had most of his crews and equipment on that fire. Then this fire took off overnight. That must have caused a huge change in the CalFire order of battle.
klk. Yes, I know where Tuolumne City is, my post was ambiguous. Thanks for catching it.
I was surprised!
They'll be focusing their resources on structure protection. Obviously the PML development but also probably trying to keep the fire from crossing the Tuolumne River below Hetch Hetchy and protecting Hetch Hetchy dam facilities.
At least the winds are light so far today.
CalFire has the other major fire to deal with: American fire east of Auburn/Foresthill At least SoCal is quiet….. for now.
btw, pyro over on hotlist has put together a fire history map that shows previous burn history in the area. i knew that much of this ground had burned back in 87 as part of the complex fire, but hadn't found a good footprint for it--
To the NE, the fire is now working up Kibbie ridge, nearing Kibbie Lake (NE of Cherry) and Laurel Lake (NE of Eleanor). Air attack is having a hard time painting the fire directly due to smoke/visibility, or getting off the ground, for that matter. Tuolumne City is now under evacuation advisory, it looks like efforts may be shifting to protection rather than suppression, they are discussing "strategy change."
Personally, I'd stay out of the 108 corridor this weekend out of respect for fire fighting efforts and potential evacuations. I'd also stay away from the Valley.
Edit - "QITNL, Kibbie is NE of Cherry, Laurel is NE of Eleanor, no," Yes, you are correct, I'm freaking dyslexic sometimes. I can usually get N & S correct, W & E or L & R are a whole other can of worms. Fixed. Thanks, scuffy b.
Yeah, Brad, I've been thinking of you. When I dropped by to grab your book, Vicki and I were talking about how dry it was. And that was late June. On the bright side, they are putting a lot of effort into structure protection and much of that work seems to be going well. Best luck to you and everyone out there.
Pelucidwombat: it doesn't look like you're going to be allowed to come up here!
From a local news station:
"The Advisory Evacuation has grown. Areas include Soulsbyville, Willow Springs and areas on the south side of highway 108.
Tuolumne County Sheriff Jim Mele says, "It is advisory and there are no mandatory evacuations in those areas at this time."
Also, roadways into Tuolumne City are being closed to the public. Only residents, firefighters and law enforcement are being allowed into the area."
From the current satellite hot spots it doesn't look like Mather/Evergreen Lodge and PML are out of the woods yet. Really scary how much wooded terrain there is in easy reach of this thing.
Obviously the water in Cherry and Eleanor will be affected--post-wildfire runoff has elevated levels of metals, etc. So far I don't think anything in the Hetchy watershed has burned (but it will certainly get some ash if the wind turns, if it hasn't already).
[edit: correct, this is the hetchy watershed map.]
Pelucidwombat: it doesn't look like you're going to be allowed to come up here!
From a local news station:
"The Advisory Evacuation has grown. Areas include Soulsbyville, Willow Springs and areas on the south side of highway 108.
Tuolumne County Sheriff Jim Mele says, "It is advisory and there are no mandatory evacuations in those areas at this time."
Also, roadways into Tuolumne City are being closed to the public. Only residents, firefighters and law enforcement are being allowed into the area."
For those who are bad at english (like me) ... does that mean 108 is closed, or "game time decision" ?
EDIT : sorry if that sounds cold, for people who this fire actually matters and affects their lives, and i'm just looking to have fun going out to play.
ecflau: Monolith has it right - only Tuolumne City has restrictions for now and 108 is open.
But this thing seems to be racing toward that town! I've never heard of such a restriction there, even during another fire some years ago in which we could see flames from parts of town.
Still, it appears that they are making huge efforts now that will allow them to stop the fire in the North Fork Tuolumne River canyon. They'll let it burn up into that canyon and then stomp it in the canyon below town (at least that looks like the plan).
"Tuolumne County, CA -- Unless you're a resident or members of the Rim Fire emergency response team you won't get into Tuolumne City. The advisory evacuations have expanded from the area known as Sherwood Forest to the east entrance of Twain Harte down Highway 108 to Willow Springs and Soulsbyville. Highway 108 is open to traffic.
That is not the case in Tuolumne City, Spokesperson Scott Johnson says, "The California Highway Patrol is manning road closures at all entrances into Tuolumne City unless you are a resident and can prove you are a resident."
I am in SF right now and just finished setting up an ad-hoc network for the Evergreen server and computer equipment. Word came to us around 1pm that the Evergreen and Camp Mather are safe at this time with no loss is structures. The fire fighters were able to bump the fire around us. We are not completely out of the woods yet but this is the first official good news we have had so far. Camp Tawonga also escaped damage.
The bad news was the mandatory evacuation of Sunset Inn and Hardin Flat around 2 pm. They are now trying to focus efforts in the Tuolumne City direction as well as toward PML.
These maps are a little slow and you kinda have to guess what's going on. The lines are rough but the spots indicate the heat and spread of the fire. They complement the MODIS maps Ward Trotter & monolith are providing.
Over the last 24 hours most of the chatter has switched from Groveland/PML to drawing a line at Tuolumne City. Winds are blowing to the NE - Hetch Hetchy is the last major piece of infrastructure in that corner. You hit granite at Lake Vernon so there's a bit of a natural line there.
It sounds like a primary concern now is the 108 corridor. They are prepping a number of lines in that area; they might not be able to knock it down before it gets there. You might be just NW enough to be lucky.
Got an email this afternoon from Bill and Lauren that they would be evacuating Sunset Inn. My brother Matt and his horse Sharky made it out yesterday after two nights with Bill and Lauren. They were all allowed out west on 120 to Big Oak Flat. It looks like Sawmill Mnt got burnt and that the fire reached Matt's place on Sawmill Mnt Area Rd. Haven't heard of any structures lost there. Hopefully his place is OK.
The Southeast Blue Team assumed command of the Rim Fire on August 23 at 6:00 A.M. and will remain in unified command with CalFire. Approximately 4,500 structures are threatened. Fire continues to spread eastward.
That's 2000 more homes at risk than this morning. I assume that reflects the new danger to the area south of 108
Everyone with an eye for potential fire disasters has wondered
how those little villages along the Sonora Pass road could have
survived? The forest is thick, trees overhang most every building,
thick pine needle carpets on roofs. Defensible space is an alien concept.
Has their luck finally run out?
I've just spent 6 months managing a major wild land fuel clearance project. The goals are to slow the spread of fire, but more importantly to provide a fuel break that makes a safe space for the firefighters to work from. Incidentally it can also improve habitat diversity (which was one of our lesser goals)
We had three main approaches:
1) remove all brush at least 25 feet either side of the road.
2) Trim all tree branches as high as a power pole saw could reach: about 10 feet. Also from 25 to 50 feet either side
3) Remove all conifers (except redwoods) up to 8" diameter
4) Remove selected species of hardwoods up to 8", saving some. In my project we specifically saved about 1/2 the madrones, all the buckeye and about 1/2 of the "true oaks"
5) reduce or eliminate branches or trees that arch over the road. You can take away all the ladder fuel and still have a crown fire.
but you've got to maintain it. Another section we finished clearing nearly a year ago is now re-grown brush up to 3' high!
So now we're working on getting another grant for maintenance. We figure we'll have to re-work every bit of it every three years, 1/3 each year.
It's a huge and expensive effort. Even for my 2 miles.
A lot of the action was focused on this area today:
Missing photo ID#317601
They've been trying to thin the fire down as it headed west on Paper Cabin Ridge north of the Tuolumne River. The fear was that it would dogleg around straight into Tuolumne town. Here's T911 painting the city, crazy:
Aircraft are signing off for the evening but they're sounding more confident about their chances now. If that area holds okay overnight they'll be attacking the northern sectors tomorrow.
My thoughts on the drive both in and out through a completely fuel choked and unhealthy forest was that we've passed from the politically correct to the criminally negligent in the management of our forests.
Thank you to everyone who is posting maps. My computer literacy is lacking so I appreciate what you are doing.
Here is a link to a video of the 1961 Harlow fire that burned from Stumpfield mountain in Mariposa county right up to Oakhurst. It burned 20,000 acres in 2 hours. It burned so fast that trees would be burnt on one side and green on the other. There are some incredible stories in the video.
Compare these two maps, if you are unclear about the fire's exact location and the locations of places people have been mentioning. they are NOT ORIENTED in the same direction, but it's the best a mouse can do.
Mariposa County touron map.
Credit: mouse from merced
neebee, here's a simple map for those with no intimate knowledge of the fire's area. It's made for tourism, to entice potential buyers.
Notice the three x marks. The orange x is Khanom's, Denise's ma lives up north from there in the cluster of streets, looking like what it is, a subdivision in the hills. Denise's house, which she no longer occupies, being occupied with the Rev, is in the furthest right group of streets on the south side of Ferretti Rd., before it intersects with Hwy 120 on the east end.
She and the Rev live on Manzanita Way, where the green x marks it.
Bill and Lauren and ANDY Nickell and the Sunset Inn B & B live at the small red x, approximately.
The fire's burning in the boxes at the top of this map, and it also is burning in the lands west of them and north of them and under the boxes on the right side, which is in YNP.
The small scales of the fire maps, compared to this size, are confusing if you don't have context. That is how Google Earth works.
This is brought to you by musmiddleearth.sage/wow-this-is-a-revoltin-development/all-fake.stfu
The Nickell's daughter, Amy, I believe her name is, having met her as an sdult only one time, lives on the north side just on Ferretti Rd., between Denise's house and 120, closer to Sunset Inn.
What slays me is that when the Rev and I visited Khanom's farm a couple of weeks ago, the next day we drove into Groveland from the east end of Ferretti Rd., where there is a VERY STEEP road leading down to a bridge on the river at a spot called Lumsden, a starting point for river trips, and it's, pardon, probably WAS a beauty of a place, with great fishing, too.
As we drove in along Ferretti, the view expanded when the road came near to the drop to the river and the northern Yosemite peaks, Conness and all, were RIGHT THERE IN FRONT OF US! I'd never been on that section of Ferretti after the turn-off to Lumsden, ever. I like to think I could go out there and take photos this winter, when the snow covers some of the damage, but it will be a sad, sad journey, I am sure...DANG!
I spent most of this afternoon out in the hills north of Merced and have pictures of the pyroculmulus cloud rising and collapsing and then rising again.
I'll be posting them up shortly on The Flames thread, in order to save this thread from invasion by mice. You guys have enough problems.
"I just said, 'Good luck.'"--Bob's 115th Dream
And that goe for you, neebee, with your internest problems, too.
hey there say, mouse!!! mouse you are wonderful ... i been trying to do and see this myself, and i can't :(
no maps will load and if they do , they get stuck and i can't move them...
this is exactly what i wanted and needed :)
thank you so very much... :)
will go back and take a longer look, now that i posted for you
to thank you, can you enlarge it just a tad? or will it not cover
all the 'so called bases' ... you could put the larger one
in THE FLAMES... then... I CAN see the 'x's okay though...
just wanted to see the printing of words better, but i will ]
zoom my browser, too...
khanom, i did not backtrack yet, HOW are you and girlfriend doing there
with the ranch???
earlier, i had heard the sunset inn was still okay, is it
STILL okay now? and the evergreen, too??
(my brother matt's, place, as chappy mentioned, is questionable)
mouse, WHERE IS sawmill mt road , on that map??
is it shown??
hey there say, khanom... GLAD you are safe and sound!! :)
if matt has not left groveland, with his horse, for somewheres... you may just run into him...
check out nita's picture, again...
if you do, let him know i been 'with him in spirit' and praying, through all
this >:D< and send my love...
SAY folks not sure if these are even worth reading, if hype, if
good info, or what, etc... but:
i cannot read anything anywhere, :( and browser never work again, :(
even opera... :(
but the taco works, so i posting these here to see if it will work for me to read from here... if not, perhaps some of you can read them and put in quotes ANYTHING that is worthy and worth knowing as to fire info:
The MODIS fire map as of 20 minutes ago.
The red and orange squares are active within last 24 hours.
I've added Pins for Hardin Flat Rd and Sawmill Mt Rd.
Tuolumne City is just to the left of the picture.
108 crosses the top left corner
Hetch Hetchy dam is just at the campground symbol near the upper east front of the fire.
Camp Mather is at or near the campground symbol at the lower east front of the fire.
Pine Mt lake is the lake just at the left edge of the image, below center
Groveland is about 5 miles west of the fire just beyond the left side of image.
From the last Inciweb report, about 11:15
The very high potential for long range spotting however remains a significant concern for fire to advance beyond the retardant lines and allow for fire spread into the communities of Tuolumne City, Twain Harte and Long Barn.
the fire is now in position where it could run up two major drainages, north fork of the tuolumne and the clavey.
deep canyons like n fork can work like chimneys-- that was how this thing blew up so dramatically a few days back. one potential scenario is that n fork blows up-- then you can have spotting anywhere, which would suck resources away from folks out on the various lines as well as clustering air support.
fingers crossed here.
this site is now aggregating some of the useful links:
In the top left, you will see Twain-Harte. Sister Lenna lives at Cedar Ridge, in the shadow of the binding. Our Father, who should be in heaven, find St. Jude and wake his butt up!
Credit: mouse from merced
Right by Rush Creek is the Sunset Camp, Bill's place as it was known.
Credit: mouse from merced
That should help. It's from the DeLorme California Atlas & Gazeteer.
"Gazeteer long and hard, she's a naughty hottie."
Sawmill Mtn. Rd. is shown.
This is just awful. Horrendous. The shits. There are some pics showing on The Flames, but I need to go help the Simon Brothers deal with a dead battery, so I gotta split.
Enjoy. Everyone loves a good cry.
When I spoke on the phone a while ago with the Rev, he said yesterday was spent helping the Nickells move their cargo down to a house they've scored in Big Oak Flat. They're all fine, but the Inn is going down, the way this is looking.
I'm sure they rescued Lauren's chickens, somehow. Eggs Ackley how, I can only guess, but I'd consider BARBECUING THEM!
Having hiked and played all up and down these drainages, I concur, it's some steep shizznit. I'm at a loss for words and feel like my childhood home is burning down. The one you think, maybe, that you can return too. Some of the best days of my life have been spent lolling in the sun at the Clavey.
Wow the beast is looking considerably improved since yesterday.
This may be due to ,wind shifts , slightly cooler night temps ,and fuel profile changes up slope( N andNE, )and the very hard work and successful work of firefighters in harms way.
The wind is expected to shift coming from the north. As I predicted up thread , the SE flank might make a run for those thick slopes in that direction. Good news there is that wind will be out the East after midnight and then back out of the SW Sunday.
See that's the problem with this beast are these frequent constant f*#king wind shifts. It's like being in a room with a power fan in every corner ,turning on and off sequentially
The wind must be already shifting out of NW . Note the heat-up on the southeast flank.
Credit: Ward Trotter
Lets hope when the wind shifts coming from the east after midnight that the western flank doesn't get heated up too bad.
very sad to hear this... as to the sunset inn of the nickles (nichols) not sure, i saw it spelled both ways...
thankful to god that folks helped them move out, i think?? i had hear that they had critters already or in process of evacuated, the other day, but
NOT completely sure, as i heard that from someone else... not from me talking to someone...
say, one of these links, forgot which one, ALSO showed a very good but small map...
am babysitting, will check in later, but still praying...
The Clavey River drainage is to the north. That area is pretty remote, hard to fight, but there isn't much structural damage to worry about for a bit. Of more concern is the W and SE.
Missing photo ID#317705
The west area has been holding okay. Airdrops yesterday prevented it from moving further west, preventing a Tuolumne City dogleg. On the ground, the north and south flanks of the Tuolumne River are essentially two separate operations. Ferretti/PML/Groveland was the initial concern earlier this week - it's not out yet. Now they need to hold the line to the north, they were backfiring and painting this morning. If that works, the 108 corridor is off the hot seat for a moment.
Missing photo ID#317717
Today the SE started heating up, they've been moving in more ground crews and it will be getting more attention from air attack. They're trying to hold the line on Evergreen Road, which was jumped south of Camp Mather. The fire is on Ackerson Ridge to the east and Pilot Ridge to the south.
It would eat Tuolumne City alive! Used to be a crazy dump but is actually a neat town. my mom owned the hair shop in town for many years. Let's hope it doesn't get to that point. Sending vibes to my wildland friends for safety. And less crazy wind.
just got back from the community meeting with fire officials at miwuk.
they seemed really confident about the southwest-- pml and groveland. it's his job to project confidence and hope, but i don't think it was bluster.
west side on the 108 corridor there wasn't anything not already known to anyone following on the scanner and hotlist. crews down in the canyon are building a line from paper cabin to duckwall mountain in hope of turning it away from the north fork canyon and towards the clavey. they hope to have the line finished tomorrow.
if it jumps that line, the contingency line is on the canyon rim along the south edge of tuolumne city. they've painted the sh#t out of that rim and have stacks of resources. but if it jumps the pc-dw line, it would prolly run as far as conditions permit and we're f*#ked
this is basically conditions dependent-- if it goes nuclear like it did a few days ago, in similar terrain, it could run until it wants a beer and a sandwich. some of the forecasts suggest monsoon moving in tuesday-- if we could move that up a day, and then get through tomorrow, we can all start breathing easier.
best news i had all day was the temp-- i went up to p-crest and up aways toward dodge and then back down to twain harte. everywhere i went today the temps were about 10 degrees less than i'd expect this time of year, and no big convection columns.
the net is getting touchy, so you'll either have to terrain map for the images or maybe someone else can post the location maps.
Evacuation Advisories Lifted for Pine Mountain Lake and Buck Meadows
Release for Saturday, August 24, 2013/Time: 2:00 PM
Evacuated residents from Highway 120 east to Buck Meadows and residents of Pine Mountain Lake, with exception of Graham Ranch Road beyond the cattle guard, will be allowed to return to their homes beginning on Saturday, August 24, 2013 at 6:00 P.M. Residents along Graham Ranch Road, beyond the cattle guard, can expect to return as soon as fire conditions allow. Only residents and those that can prove they have legitimate business in the area will be allowed in. Pacific Gas and Electric has restored electrical service to all areas of Pine Mountain Lake impacted by the Rim Fire, with the exception of residences along Graham Ranch Road beyond the cattle guard.
Which means they will/are shifting resources to more needed areas.
The latest MODIS is indicative of winds out of the north and northwest. The SE and ESE flank is openin up.
After Midnight the wind shifts from out of the east. This may not be good for the western flank near Groveland. Good news is that eastern winds won't last long.
SF water is bomber! Man, you get back inside your rent controlled fresh from seeing some street side homosexual fornifications, and nothing but the crystal clear of the ALPINE country will quench that repressed homosexual fire. Let's keep it that way, huh?
Gotta respect a city that's been effectively steering the resources for hundreds of miles around since '49. 18, that is. Made NV its bitch, the history books do tell.
Anyhow, this fog has got me down too. I hope the marine layer clears up soon here in Reno.
oh my, as to this, yeah, you don't really realize in these terms:
Everyone in Greeley we've talked to is super paranoid about the southern expansion down Pilot Ridge. Many were here in 1987 and know to remain on alert. Things can change very rapidly... and you know, I didn't put this together until just now -- at it's peak the fire was moving 3 miles an hour.
In that worst-case scenario we'd have like 2-3 hours
and even then, it could start a 'race' and kick it up a bit :O
wish it desired overnight parking, as its 'engine dies', and folks
can enjoy a huge victory for all these dangerous, loyal work and faithfully had gut-wrenching perseverance...
Rim fire - Online map showing most recent perimeter and wind data
The following link will always display the most perimeter of the Rim Fire straight from the GeoMAC server. This is the same server that also provides data to the crews on the fire line. Sometimes the data on the InciWeb site is not as current as the data that comes from the GeoMAC server. (The InciWeb site gets its data from GeoMAC.)
The map also shows wind speed and direction. Note that the wind data is always 3 hours old.
For more information regarding this map, you can follow the “About” link in the upper left corner of the map.
5:45 PM yesterday (top image) compared to 12:45 PM today
Yellow hasn't burned in more than 24 hours.
A lot less burning on the NW towards 108, A big move east past Mather Camp into Yosemite and a small move SE towards the Big Oak Flat park entrance,
Generally holding to the West, North, South and NE.
Not much movement along Pilot Ridge.
Lack of roads in the Yosemite area will greatly reduce crew access. But then there are few (no) structures to protect.
They spent all yesterday doing fire lines and back burns between the fire and Tuolumne City. That, and the wind direction seem to have made a big difference. To the NE, there is much less fuel load where the land rises to the granite domes.
Borate salts used in the past to fight wildfires have been found to sterilize the soil and be toxic to animals so are now prohibited. Newer retardants use ammonium sulfate or ammonium polyphosphate with attapulgite clay thickener or diammonium phosphate with a guar gum derivative thickener. These are not only less toxic but act as fertilizers to help the regrowth of plants after the fire. Fire retardants often contain wetting agents, preservatives and rust inhibitors and are colored red with ferric oxide or fugitive color to mark where they have been dropped. Brand names of fire retardants for aerial application include Fire-Trol and Phos-Chek.
Some of these crews have gone way past recommended times on the line, but in dire circumstances, they will drop the safety requirements back some to accommodate needs. So if you see some fireman that seem to be draggin azz, its because they truly are beat. You get to a point where you just act on auto pilot. May the FORCE be with them...
K,, not to be a pain,, but that ISNT the worst case scenario by a long shot. This is still a big and very capable beast. If it gets wind driven you may not have an hour. Stay on yur toes..
khanom, yr source wasn't far offbase: dogville getting ev'd.
A Mandatory Evacuation has been issued for residences north of Old Yosemite Road (Forest Road 2S01).
An Evacuation Warning has been issued for all residences north of Bull Creek Road (Forest Road 2S02), Bondurant Mine Road, Texas Hill Road, and Wampum Hill. The Mandatory Evacuation and Evacuation Warning has been issued by the Mariposa County Sheriff’s Office. For more information please contact the Mariposa County Sheriff’s Office at: 209-966-5325.
This is one of the tools that firefighters use on wildland fire. If there is a water source nearby these beasts are very handy, particularly for structure protection. They deliver up to 1200 gallons or more per drop.
The recent winds out of the north has gotten the SE cooking. The winds have shifted back to the SW, which is probably somewhat good news, in the overall scheme of things-- it will have the effect of pushing the fire in a direction , NE, where the fuel profile is scarcer. But it will also inflame the due north areas , which will be a replay of a few days ago. At least now firefighters and residents have had time to regroup there.
Terrible thing about the SE flank is the abundance of primo fuel.
Be a shame if more sequoias get nailed.
Hope the wind doesn't shift to the north anytime soon
Usually the animals just move out of the fire's way.
In some cases they'll get caught just like the Arizona hotshots
did, but research from the Yellowstone fires of 1988 showed
most animals survived without any issues.
Hoping that they get this thing under control (or rain or snow
it's the line they set in the canyon below tuolumne city in hopes of turning it back toward the clavey. if it breaks that line the contingency line is basically 108, and that means a whole lot of stuff up in smoke. seriously, if it jumps that line, then pondo hills and possibly everything up to miwuk are gonna get hard evacs.
sounds like they got heliloads dumped on the saddle down on paper cabin ridge, and its calmed down.
props to the folks who are spending the night on the dozer line down there in hell as that smoke plume falls back.
We've now adopted a fire crew and truck from San Diego. They're here doing reconnaissance and playing deep backup to the main lines. They pulled into the big driveway of out-of-towner's second home to sleep for the night.
Nice Guys. One of them is a serious climber. We gave them showers and birthday cake.
Drove over Sonora Pass this evening. Never been over it before, but it was a ghost town, no surprise though. The smoke got so bad we were coughing with all the windows rolled up in the car.
Saw about 20 firetrucks including 5 or so trailers with bulldozer on them. Also lots of "Thanks Firefighters" signs which I am sure are much appreciated.
It's gobbling up the hills on the south bank of Hetch Hetchy. Has obviously jumped the road there.
Moving east of Mather Camp in the Park in a big way.
Right up to 120 and the Park boundary outside the Big Oak Flat entrance.
More movement up Pilot Ridge and NE towards Hell's Mt. Looks as if there was major spotting up there.
Great thing about Yosemite is there are so few back roads. All wilderness. Great until you have to fight a fire. No way to get enough men/women in there for effective backfires. Which aren't much use in heavy timber anyway. So it's up to hotshot crews, where it's safe, (let's not forget Arizona a few weeks ago) and the aerial attack. But also very few structures to have to protect.
Same ridge, forest service road just off Hardin Flat Rd. to the south.
Credit: mouse from merced
Kiss it goodbye.
Edit: I just got off the phone with the Rev, who has no computer, so he hadn't heard the news about Berkeley Camp.
His words: "Holy shit!" As I posted earlier, the Nickells are fine; daughter Amy has moved back to her place on Ferretti Road for a couple of days now. Denise's and her mom's are fine, according to the Rev if Amy has been allowed back to the same neighborhood about a mile or so distant.
He has promised to call and let me know any news he hears from now on.
Great post. The CC [Central Command] would like the people to go to that site for information. They have been having problems with everyone on Facebook, twitter and calling in since it is screwing up [overloading] their communications. People getting wrong info and spreading incorrect information. They had one guy call in from the UK and asked if his daughter who lived in Modesto is OK. So they are trying to get the word out go to their site that you just posted and will get correct info. That is one.
Problem is people are people and they panic. They have their act together and will be there and tell people to leave or not to leave. People are giving out incorrect info on the web. It is also tying up communications because they cannot get through fast enough. Like everyone is on the phone, when they had the earthquake in Northridge phones went down because everyone was on them. They need to get access so they can reverse 911 to call you. In some cases they can not get through.
Here is yesterdays
Believe me they will give plenty of time to tell you in person when to leave or not to leave.
Let the professional people do what they are there for.
“Due to high demand, this Web site may become unresponsive. We are working to address these issues. Thank you for your patience.”
Unfortunately that message has been at the top of the website for MONTHS (as long as I've been using it)
So it's pretty hard to say what it really means.
The "last updated" time always makes sense when I check the page.
The current map shows the fire's almost on Bill's doorstep. The black x between the "a" and "n" in Branch III is the location, before their section of Hardin Flat Road gets to Crocker Meadow or Rush Creek.
I see little hope, unless the fact there's a large meadow there for staging at the Inn, not to mention a turnaround for large equipment, can help out the crews.
Since this morning all the activity seems to be on the SE side. Moving quickly towards White Wolf
Also growing SE just N of the Big Oak Flat entrance. A spot fire on Crocker Ridge.
Not much growth on the other fronts where they can get equipment and boots on the ground and use backfires to contain it.
Odd that it's moving SE with a SW wind. I suppose it's being driven by topography, up the Tuolumne River basin.
MODIS update 30 minutes ago
unfortunately it looks as if west section of Hardin Flat Rd got toasted end to end yesterday and Saturday. And there's still a lot of burning along it.
The fire crews are of course doing everything they safely can to protect property.
Good luck to your friends.
EDIT: that would be the west section of Hardin Flat Rd. East section not so bad, yet.
Just called them, left a message hope they are OK. My truck is packed and ready to go was go to use it on my property but safe since I have the whole state and some across the street. As for Bill for me to get in there would have to go through Mariposa; have foam that will help out for their ground and that will help and as for their structures a little tricky for the fire retardant it lasts for 24 hours and needs to be applied at the right time.
By the way for the best source of news are these guys, thought about spraying them, better news crews coming in now.
As for how often they update the Inciweb site. The managers on the ground have plenty to do assimilating incoming information and directing the fire crews and air resources.
They have direct contact with county Sheriff, CHP, county emergency services, etc. Also very likely the local CERT teams. That's how they'll get out the info when people need to evacuate. On the ground, door to door.
The Inciweb site is really for the press and us bystanders.
The MODIS satellite info is a major source of info for them.
There is also, on site, a Fire Behaviorilist. This person is usually an experienced wild land fire fighter with specialized training in fire behavior. They work out their fire forecasts from MODIS, weather, fuel moisture, vegetation type, soil type, creeks, ponds, etc. They use modeling software. They give up to the minute forecasts to the Incident Commander. (A neighbor did this on the big Croy fire behind Gilroy about 10 years ago. He felt that the results he got from the models were largely accurate and invaluable)
I agree that you should look out for yourself. Dunno if the fire is threatening your place, but, if it is, this is what I would do: Keep everything as wet / moist as possible, especially the roof and eaves of your house-- embers getting sucked up from the column and thrown from the main fire landing in fruitful ground is how big fires get bigger. Fires throw fire out in front and then draw towards the new heat. Or, they also back into good fuel. In any event, there is a lot you can do.
I know from your posting that you have some sort of farm?? It's unlikely that you would have to evacuate because of any real danger to yourselves, as opposed to being evacuated en masse because you live where you live.
Lost.. Khanom is right in the middle of it. He is concerned about his property and life. And his neighbors and friends. And has been for days now. So perhaps you could understand if he missed your very slim joke.
I wish the best to those whose lives and property are threatened. Hell, it's a real pisser being in one of the collecting basins for that fire's smoke up here in Reno, that's bad enough. The stress of being in the path of destruction like those folks are sucks big time.
I was kinda hoping that the oak that dropped its limb on the counselor would get burned, but that's even stupider than the bickering here.
Too much stress, that's the truth, Jeequues B. Bombed.
Khanom, L.I.S. is a hyper-sensitive guy, only trying to help relieve our woes. Give each other a hug and let's just stay on alert.
I've accepted the loss of the Inn. I knew it was gone in my bones this morning.
For all the guys here who've given good dope, maps, and encouragement to both us sideliners and the heaviest losers, thank you, God bless you, too.
I'm not done grieving, there'll be time later on for that.
My load's not nearly what that of Lauren's (and many others) must be. She might surprise me, though, she's an unflappable personality, resourceful, and savvy--and she's been through all this before, except for the ending, of course.
Sorry for not cutting you some slack. Thursday I was in Sacramento and girlfriend called saying about Tuolumne going to be evacuated and was not concerned just then until she called back 10 minutes later and updated info then left got to my studio and loaded my truck with a machine that is usually not for putting out fires but a few modifications can save a couple of structures mostly mine. So I can understand your concerns. I was going to stay even though we were in evacuation mode for 48 hours.
A lot of things to think about that’s for sure. What about your goods or personal property in your house, do you leave the lights on, lock or unlock the doors, what about drifters stealing your most valuable things that you could not stuff into the car. Insurance or none?
We were lucky. Gov. Brown sure had his s&it together and we got it. No National Guards but would have been next if we had to go. Have noticed all the druggies and homeless packed up and gone. But they will be back soon.
Taking a guess a few hundred sheriffs and Highway Patrol. Then for the fire fighters coming and going, sleeping and eating around 1,500.
Tuolumne is in lock down well only to the people who live here; we can move and do what we do every day. The casino is helping out so I can imagine how they feel with no ding, ding going on. Business’s all around the corridor is stopped and can imagine all theirs woes as well.
Anyway sorry for the snap just wish that storm to the east could move its way west.
Reason they picked our town is because easiest to the fires or they pretty much know. Then again things always change.
There are three other maps that fire guys look at posted one will try to blow up opps make larger.
Conrad's brother Steve and sister Denise run Priest Station. It's been in the family for at least 3 generations.
Now more than ever, this is a great place to eat on way to/from Yosemite.
I'll definitely stop in Groveland proper more often.
the Lost Mouse knows how to read maps. I see very poorly the small letters, so I just looked at section lines. One runs down to the label Branch III on the map from yesterday that the Lost Vet in Tuolumne posted, and I compared that to the one from today that Khanom posted, or I think that was the one.
"Too many Silvas," they say in the Portuguese community here.
In our little campfire of watchers and waiters and players, there is a plethora of maps and unless you are used to seeing them it is a bit confusing, especially when a Mouse feels his age by being a little blind.
Keep smilin', you two. I'm cryin' inside, fer sure.
I been knowing (as they say in the redneck comminity here) the Nickells since the mid-seventies, just before the plane ditched in the high country with the weed cargo.
Like you two, there are memories involving me, my daughter, numerous friends and adventures and many-many Budweisers.
Ten minutes ago. The beast's cloud has moved southeast relative to my position.
Credit: mouse from merced
This one shows the area south of the plume. That is probably sitting right over the 120 entrance station. "That's twenty dollars, please."
Just because it burned through that area doesn't mean the inn burned. The Tuolumne Family camp burned because the fire crowned when it passed the camp , and the camp was overgrown. The firefighters couldn't stop it because it burned at 2 Am, so no aircraft support.
If they were able to douse that area around the inn with fire retardant, then it could still be okay.
Inciweb says that as of 8 Am this morning that 24 structures have been lost to date, but I believe that includes outbuidlings. Its hard to know if that includes Tuolumne Family camp, or what that really means.
Here is a webpage with a video of the family camp.
uolumne is in lock down well only to the people who live here; we can move and do what we do every day. The casino is helping out so I can imagine how they feel with no ding, ding going on. Business’s all around the corridor is stopped and can imagine all theirs woes as well.
Lost.. Sounds like you are in Tuolumne city. I hope that they can stop the fire before it gets to you.
Nita - there is a reasonable chance your friends' cabins may be safe, even if the fire overburned it, similar to what happened at Camp Mather.
Here's the latest map from ERSI. While it's already outdated, that corner hasn't been overrun by hotspots yet, the little red dots indicate the advance of the fire. I'm guessing they're around 1S73.
Missing photo ID#318175
From the briefing map khanom posted this morning:
Missing photo ID#318176
The red line was the advance of the fire. The small X's heading south from Crocker Meadow are a completed Dozer Line, the dotted X line was proposed, probably completed today. The dark black lines are Contingency Lines. They threw a lot of resources down there today. Check the lines in bold, below. At least they are getting some attention.
Start: 08/17/2013 1525
Cnt/MMA: 20 %
Costs to Date: $27,229,744
Structures Threatened: 1,000 OUTB , 4,500 PRIM , 6 COMM
Structures Destroyed: 12 OUTB , 11 PRIM
Resources Committed: Total Personnel: 3,752
Report Date: Aug 26, 2013 1800
Significant Events: Mandatory evacuations South of HWY 120 in Division R and towards Yosemite National Park North of the Old Yosemite Road. Structure defense South of HWY 120 in Division R by ground and aerial resources was occurring in the afternoon. Evacuation Advisory issued for areas form Long Barn North to Pinecrest. A Forest Closure in in effect for locations near and in advance of the fire. Several locations on the West side of Yosemite National Park have had closures implemented as a result of the fires spread. Evacuation Advisories are still in effect for Tuolumne City and nearby areas along the HWY 108 corridor. Contingency planning, indirect line construction and indirect line preparation to the east of the HWY 108 corridor. Access and difficult terrain remain concerns for crews and equipment. Good progress was made with constructing and securing lines in Divisions B, D, E and M. Good progress is being achieved with construction of contingency control lines in Divisions C, G and H.
Remarks: The Rim Incident exhibited large fire growth again today. Rapid fire growth and extreme fire behavior are hampering suppression efforts. A significant utilization and reliance upon aerial resources with heavy air tankers including the VLAT DC-10 and MAFFS is occurring with structure defense, prep of locations in advance of the fires spread, control of spot fires and slowing the fires advancement through terrain inaccessible to ground resources to allow time for indirect line construction to be completed. Type 1 helicopters are providing point protection and cooling areas where direct line construction can be achieved safely. The extremely dry fuels, high winds and potential for long-range spotting remains a significant concern for the fire to advance beyond the retardant lines and allow for fire spread into the communities of Tuolumne City, Twain Harte and Long Barn on the West side of the fire and East deeper into Yosemite N.P.towards Harden Lake Rd, White Wolf Rd and Tioga Rd. Approx 4500 structures remain threatened in advance of the fire on both the East and West sides. Fire is expected to continue its eastward spread farther into the West side of Yosemite N.P. towards Aspen Valley. Several residents remain under mandatory evacuation in the Scotts Ridge area South of HWY 120. Evacuation Advisories were issued to areas from Long Barn North to Pinecrest. Due to inaccessible steep terrain and extreme fire behavior suppression efforts on active portions of the fire are being significantly challenged. Heavy reliance on aviation resources has been critical in an effort to slow the fires progress to allow suppression resources to establish indirect control lines in areas where accessibility and safety can be achieved. The availability of heavy aircraft is pertinent to the success of suppression efforts. Orders for resources in support of contingency groups for Tuolumne City, Twain Harte and Long Barn continue. The Rim fire continues under unified command with Cal-Fire
Observed Fire Behavior: Fire became very active early in the day around 0900 hrs. Very fast running surface fire quickly transitioned into sustained crown runs and long range spotting on the fires Eastern and Southeastern perimeters located inside as well as advancing towards Yosemite National Park. Fire activity was moderate over the Southwest and Western perimeters. Fire became fairly active in the early afternoon along the Northern perimeter with spot fires challenging suppression resources and requiring heavy support from aerial resources.
Planned Actions: Structure defense North and South of HWY 120 in Division R to from Pilot Ridge to Yosemite National Park. Continued direct and indirect line construction accompanied by burnout operations where accessibility and safety allows in Branch II and IV. Continued contingency line construction in Branches II and IV in advance of the communities of Tuolumne City, Twain Harte and Long Barn. Mopup and contingency line construction in Branches I and III. Direct line construction with burnout will continue in Branch IV where fire activity and safety allows.
Predictions, based on the observation that you can't stop a fire burning uphill or burning downwind (prevailing from the West) on a wide front:
fire overruns White Wolf and cuts off 120 between Crane Flat and Tuolumne Meadows. This makes it difficult to get crews / pumper trucks to the east side of the blockage. But fuels and uphills run out in that area
fire is stopped south of 120/Tioga by new bulldozer fire road on ridgetop (east of Tamarack Flat)
buildings at 120 West Entrance are saved, but it's scary because they get surrounded by the fire
most buildings at Crane Flat / Yosemite Institute are saved, but Crane Flat Lookout burns (actually I've never seen it; maybe it has a good distance from nearby trees)
burns through Tuolumne Grove, but none of the giant sequoias there are affected - it doesn't get high enough to get their crowns (could be close, though)
khanom's house / farm (Greeley Hill) is spared, but he doesn't get a good night's sleep for awhile
Brad's house (Twain Harte) - 50% chance of burning, yikes.
Wow, Clint's here. I wouldn't argue with any of that.
Your first 5 points are on the SE side. Until a couple of days ago, the SE wasn't getting much love; lately they've been getting some structure protection. There aren't a lot of structures over there, save San Francisco's water supply and other minor assets. SF dispatched their city trucks and are holding HH okay (maybe). So far only electric bills will suffer. You need clearances to drop retardant on NP's and other sorts of regulations. The fire will burn in that direction. Pin the tail on the donkey.
SR120 is probably closed for the year from some point to another. Greeley Hill is still in the balance. They are trying to contain the S & SE - but this thing is huge and they are working with limited resources. Dozer lines don't stop it. No natural firebreaks to the south, either, until what? - the Merced? Mexico?
Once again, structure protection is A#1. For a house in the woods, you hope for a burnover. For yet another morning, the corner of Paper Ridge got all the attention. It doesn't look big on the map, but it is a crucial position. If the fire doglegs there, Tuolumne City is still one firebreak away from incineration. If the winds change, look out Groveland. That's where the AM's big redardant drops were still going.
Medium rare, due north may be a bigger worry. That was blowing up this afternoon. Crews retreated to Hull Creek Campground, far north of any published worry zone. If it gets to Squamish by Christmas, we'll call it well done.
In that MODIS fire map , what is the big unburned area in the middle of all the yellow mean ?
You can read the legend at the top left of the MODIS Google Earth maps.
Yellow has burned WITHIN the time frame of 6 days ago up to the last 24 hours. All the orange and red is within the last 24 hours.
Clint: There's good road to White Wolf, and some old rough roads near it. The original Tioga road went through White Wolf and is pretty decent for a ways below the store. I'm sure they'll make a strong stand there. The fire could bypass WW in the canyon.
Moving NE up the Clavey River and past Eleanor and Cherry Lakes.
Continuing to move east towards White Wolf.
Now burning right up to the Big Oak Flat entrance.
It's easy to get fooled. The RED doesn't mean burning hottest, just that it's active within the last 6 hours.
Note the increasing area in the center with no squares. This burned more than 6 days ago.
It looks as if the actual amount of area burning in the last 6 hours has gone down. Indicating it may not be growing outward as fast as yesterday.
The smoke here this morning is also definitely the worst it's been yet. Here's looking up the driveway at 8:00 a.m.
And sorry Clint, but I'll take your "bet" (which I know is one you want to lose): I don't think Twain Harte or Tuolumne are going to go up (and for what it's worth, our house is significantly northeast of Highway 108; there are hundreds of homes between us and the fire). Yes, in a worst-case scenario it could happen. Yes, we've got a family plan for evacuation. But I don't think it will go there.
And Fred, thank you so much for posting and reposting the updated maps. Those maps are great, and it's so nice to see them together with other information all on one thread. I've always maintained that Supertopo can be a great news source :) :)
Tim Messick is going in to White Wolf to operate the water system where the fire crews will be filling up. Say a prayer for him and his family who are forgoing their vacation so he can help.
In the early 80's, before it was well known, a popular "renegade" mt bike ride was going down the old tioga road from white wolf to Aspen valley. Looks like the lower end of Aspen Valley road is on fire.
Like Fred says, new hot spots near Hodgdon Meadows this morning. Our Hodgdon buddy will be staying with us tonight in Chico.
We haven't heard from Bill and Lauren yet but still hold out hope and wish them well.
Brad, I'm thinking of you and your family, as well as all the others I don't know. I'm pleased to be providing useful information. Some day my canyon will burn. Trying to pay it forward a little bit.
Hope to see you in 3 weeks time.
Note to you locals who may have friends who lost their homes or in case someone who did sees this thread...
I lost my home to fire a few years ago. It's a big pain to deal with insurance, and I felt like there was a lot to learn quickly before the insurance-provided clean-up crews made it difficult to make our maximum claim. I was really grateful at the time for the advice of total and near-total strangers who'd been through it, and I want to offer to be one of those folks for anyone who needs it now. Feel free to e-mail me at the address linked to my Supertopo account.
Aspendougy, will do. Tim Messick will update to his wife, Marcy and she will let me know. Nita and I love that area and have biked the road to the old cabins.
The thermal image map (sorry, can't link from this mobile but link has been posted several times here) showed a couple of hot spots near corner of Evergreen and Aspen Valley and several north of there.
With so many fire trucks between there and Camp Mather there is a good chance they can wet down the spotting.
ok, this is some funny sh#t. it is remarkable how wildly ignorant californians, including journalists, are of the basic physical geography of their home region. i have plenty of sympathy for the complaint here.
Thermal map shows the fire is into that over grown forest close to the Hwy 120 Yosemite entrance station? Did it jump the dozer lines?
Looks like if it does cross Hwy 120 there will easily follow
the abundantly fueled Crane Creek valley eastward up to the Yosemite Institute at Crane Flat. The Crane Flat Helibase lookout cam is back online.
Do they think we are too stupid to sift fact from conjecture?
I'm sure that wasn't pointed at you Eric, but there are plenty of people who aren't able to sift fact from conjecture. Enough that it does cause difficulties. If the phone lines get jammed and someone who has a genuine need to know can't get through, then that can be bad. I have been amazed at the number of phone calls that I have gotten from people who were worried that Wawona would burn. Most of these were older people and they aren't stupid, just misinformed by the media and they mostly aren't very computer literate.
duckwall seems to be holding, which is the really big news of the last 24 hrs. they seem to have got dozer lines/paint around the major spots above the line as per what i could get off the scanner.
and they've had another 24hrs now for dozers and backburn. if conditions hold, i'm now more optimistic that it holds. it'd also allow free some resources to cap the clavey drainage. it's gonna make a big run up the clavey and assoc ridgeline, and they went door-to-door in miwuk telling folks to be ready.
gonna need a lot of air support-- and they've apparently activated castle air base, which may increase the number of possible drops.
Amazingly poor coverage by news orgs. Also amazing how a few locals reporting from within, provide clarity that paid professionals cannot.
Sadly, news is no longer a news organizations first priority nor primary product. Now priority is given to advertisement vehicles and the product they are selling (out) is their readers. Murdock, Turner, Time Warner, McClatchey, et al...
the unreliability of social network reporting seems greatly exaggerated at this point. The reverse is true.
Now to get them ready for anything. Mouse recall the sand pit down at the entrance. Now to give them the chemistry which I do not need [lasts for ever], all they would need to rent or get would be a used shotcrete/gunite hose/gun. Sand would need to be sized out.
Happy on the news about it.
They did a or three burns up the hill yesterday, one got away but now have it under control. The smoke this morning was like have 30 guys smoking cigars in a 10x10 enclosure no windows or air. They had us on evacuation for a few seconds. Smoke from the south.
Hoping that weather or moisture from the East comes by.
Drove into the Evergreen Lodge via Hwy 120 & Evergreen rd. with an escort yesterday.
The overall news is good. Evergreen Lodge, Camp Mather, Dimond O and Peach Growers have all so far made it through unscathed. Camp Tawonga experienced 1 structure loss, cabin 12 on the edge of camp.
The crews were actively fighting the fire on Hwy 120 about 1.5 miles East of Evergreen rd. there was also active fire fighting on Evergreen rd. on the last mile before you reach the Ackerson Meadows curve. Ackerson Meadow is untouched but Bald Mountain behind it was being consumed.
When you get to the Erikson Ranch buildings, they are untouched but it looks like they did a backburn in the meadow to prevent a runup to the buildings. Bear mountain, South of the Erikson ranch was untouched. Passing Peach Growers and Dimond O, they are untouched on the left/west side of the rd but the right/east side was burned.
The sad news of the day was that the last mile before the Evergreen was torched. Trees were black sticks and the ground was only ash. But right before you get to the Lodge you re-enter virgin forest and find the Lodge untouched. Past the Lodge down to Camp Mather is also an oasis.
neebee- I saw Matt going into his property with an escort. He was well and in good spirits despite the circumstances. Unfortunately I only got about 20 seconds to chat before his caravan moved on.
Aspendoug- the next few days will be the test for Aspen Valley. I wish I had better news but you are up next in the fires path. But the goods news was that I saw a flatbed trailer and a dozer getting parked on Aspen Valley road when I was leaving. Fire fighter priority is structure defense so they will give it their all. If you are half as lucky as the Evergreen then you should come through fine. Good luck brother.
The drive on 120 from Feretti to evergreen rd was not as bad as I expected. There is a lot of damage but it is not a moonscape and the forest is still largely there. Only time will tell if the trees survive this but if they do then much will be the same I suspect.
I have Gopro video of the drive in and out as well as almost 100 pictures. I am in a remote place on Hwy 4 and no computer to help post pictures. Just my little iPhone. But if I can figure it put I will post pictures later.
Good luck to everyone still in the path of the fire.
great report from "boots on the ground"
Inciweb on tomorrow's Tioga Rd closure, tomorrow noon.
A portion of the Tioga Road, from Crane Flat to White Wolf, will be temporarily closed to all vehicular traffic beginning tomorrow, Wednesday, August 28, 2013, at 12:00 noon. The closure is necessary for firefighters to perform fire suppression activities along the road. This portion of the road is anticipated to be closed at least through Labor Day Weekend. The park will issue an update as conditions allow for the reopening of the road.
“The work that will be performed over the next few days is instrumental in suppressing the Rim Fire within Yosemite. The safety of the firefighters working along the road is our paramount concern,” stated park Superintendent Don Neubacher.
Tamarack Flat and Yosemite Creek Campgrounds, both located along the Tioga Road within the closure, will remain closed during the fire suppression efforts. White Wolf Campground and White Wolf Lodge will remain closed. The Tioga Road will remain open east of White Wolf to the Tioga Pass Entrance. The Porcupine Flat Campground, the Tuolumne Meadows Campground, and all visitor services within Tuolumne Meadows will remain open.
I agree on the harvest but the ones that want to do it are not your clean up and plant new seeds. If they went in and shred their cuttings and manage it right no biggie buy these guys are from old school and just want the logs, no helping the county and giving back our resources that belong to us.
Let's try to keep this thread informative and factual. Please take political rants (I have plenty of my own) elsewhere.
A lot of people reading this thread may soon be in harm's way or have cabins or friends in harm's way. The last thing we should be doing here is rattling our chains. (end of my rant)
part of the "official" bulletin from Inciweb, 6:30 PM, about 2 hours ago
Incident: Rim Fire Wildfire
Released: 1:07 hrs. ago
RIM FIRE INFORMATION
Release for Tuesday, August 27, 2013/Time: 6:30 PM
Acres Burned: 184,481 Structures Threatened: 4,500
Containment: 20% Structures Destroyed: 111
Fire Start Date: August 17, 2013 Injuries: 2
Fire Cause: Under Investigation Total Personnel: 4,081
Cost to date: $33 Million
Firefighters made progress on spot fires in the Reynolds Creek drainage and burning operations south of Duckwall Mountain to Skidmore. Crews also were preparing for additional burning operations on the north side of the Tuolumne River. Firefighters secured line from Pilot Ridge west towards the Yosemite boundary along Old Yosemite Highway. Aircraft were used to support operations throughout the day. Firefighters will continue with contingency line construction in advance of the communities in the Highway 108 corridor, as well as providing structure protection. For tonight, crews will continue with line construction, structure defense and preparing for burning operations. The recent increase in structures destroyed is due to structures lost at Tuolumne Berkeley Family Camp, which include 3 commercial properties and 85 tent cabins and outbuildings.
184K acres, 4,500 structures threatened! 111 destroyed (includes tent cabins and outbuildings)
Crikey! (English slang for a foul phrase)
Beginning at noon on Wednesday, August 28, the Tioga Road (Highway 120 through the park) is closed from Crane Flat to Yosemite Creek. The only access to the Tuolumne Meadows area is via Highway 120 from near Lee Vining.
Water bucket drops from helicopters are only useful for spot fires or small fires.
Not helpful on a fire with a wide front.
Big fixed wing tanker loads instead.
And tanker trucks for when the perimeter is near a road.
[edit:] khanom, yes, the water bucket is useful for parts of the fire perimeter where there's a defensible line. (Pilot Ridge is a good example). I was thinking more about the wide fire front above Hetch Hetchy and Evergreen Road, with the uphill slope to Crane Flat.
P.S. Sorry about the overly broad initial statement - I was trying to get in a quick reply. Should have been more careful.
I was trying to say something along the lines of "you can't just pour water on a forest fire to put it out" (there's not enough water delivery logistics to do that - you have to make dirt roads around it instead).
Crane Flat webcam - can it be stopped at the top of the slope?