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Anyone experiencing smoke from wildfires in their travels?

Discussion in 'California' started by SMAlset, Jul 8, 2017.

  1. SMAlset

    SMAlset Active Member

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    It's definitely fire season and a number of wildfires are being fought now in the State. Fun time to plan for a vacation :(. You can check Cal-Fire ( CAL FIRE - California Statewide Fire Map ) for updates on fire activity.

    We're thinking of heading towards Buellton and wondering if anyone has had experience driving near the fires along Hwy 101 southbound from San Jose? The Parkfield Fire (Monterey and San Luis Obisbo counties, north of San Miguel) just popped up on the map tonight. Thankfully the Cuesta Grade Tower fire is now 100% contained. The Alamo Fire has grown rapidly over the past few days (east of Santa Maria). 19,000 acres and only 10% contained. News reports have said some residents are getting ash. For anyone planning to go towards Lake Cachuma, that fire (Whittier fire) started this morning I think and there are kids in the camp ground area. Saw on the KSBY twitter feed ( KSBY (@KSBY) | Twitter ) that parts of Atascadero lost power...not sure if the Superchargers there were in the effected area but that would be bad.

    We have the PUP package with Biodefense mode and if we decide to go will be giving it a good test I guess. I have allergies and asthma so would appreciate any feedback from anyone traveling through that area. Thanks.
     
  2. Ugliest1

    Ugliest1 S85: "Sparky"

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    I think this is OT given the geography, but the short answer is yes, Cache Creek BC was evacuated Friday just as we were arriving at our campsite (we ended up 100km north for the night). More than 20 homes were destroyed, haven't heard of any injuries though. There are other fires throughout BC from lightning strikes; I don't know what caused this one. My wife, who has asthma, had a little trouble breathing from all the smoke that travelled hundreds of kilometres (no biodefense mode in our ICE camper van).

    The good thing about the human response to these fires is that multiple states and provinces share resources to fight them. "Share" may be a strong word... someone pays... but I recall BC fighters travelling to Alberta, Washington, Oregon, California and vice versa in the past and I'm sure it's no different now.

    Good luck and safety in your continued travels.
     
  3. SMAlset

    SMAlset Active Member

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    Headed south Sunday and as soon as smoke was detected turned on biodefense. Only noticed smoke odor briefly in the car before turning it on so pleased with how it worked. Although found out if you decreased fan speed below I think 9, it turned off biodefense automatically.

    First two fires were just charred remains as seen from 101 South, although CalFire indicates the Parkfield Fire is still burning.

    Near San Miguel:
    image.jpeg image.jpeg

    Cuesta Grade (Tower Fire - out):
    image.jpeg

    Both close enough to 101 roadway I'm glad we weren't driving through during the fire.

    Stopped off for charge at Atascadero. 5a was very very slow and two other people charging said its always seems slow. Rest of stalls seemed fine. 4 charging around noon.

    We could see the smoke from a distance as we approached Santa Maria (large Alamo Fire). Drifting more towards the coast today. Large contingent of fire trucks at hotel at north end of city.

    The worse smoke we encountered was near Santa Ynez (Whittier Fire) where we were staying. Ash on car and around town. Smoky skies over Solvang and less over Buellton where we charged and thankfully the air didn't smell smokey even in Santa Ynez. Really red sunset and the most unusual orange full moon against a black night sky when leaving Solvang around 10 something.

    image.jpeg image.jpeg image.jpeg image.jpeg

    Another fire near San Luis Obisbo broke out after we passed thru so keep an eye out if traveling during fire season. There are a number of road/highway closures and you need to be mindful of your charge if diverted.
     
    • Informative x 1
  4. SMAlset

    SMAlset Active Member

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    Definitely detecting smoke in air in Santa Ynez valley area today. Car speckled with more ash and will definitely need a good cleaning outside and inside.
     
  5. SMAlset

    SMAlset Active Member

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    4th day down in Santa Ynez area. Only smelled smoke twice briefly so able to enjoy time outside with outdoor evening theater, wine tasting and horseback riding. Spent part of day up in Santa Maria and even there the winds were favorable for outdoor activities.

    CalFire site last reporting Alamo (Santa Maria) at 68% containment; Whittier at 48% (Santa Ynez valley).

    Hwy 246 south of Santa Ynez thru Lake Cachuma to Santa Barbara is still closed. Had some partial clouds overhead last day or two keeping temps down. Temps are suppose to pick up again for more high 90s-100s.
     
  6. RichardL

    RichardL Member

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    Hi @SMAIset, I assume it was you who we met at Atascadero (the X on 4B)? Glad the fires don't seem to be getting in the way too much for you.
     
  7. SMAlset

    SMAlset Active Member

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    #7 SMAlset, Jul 12, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2017
    Yes! We enjoyed chatting with you. Sad to say well be leaving here tomorrow. Open air concert in Solvang tonight, skies were pretty clear during the day, even a cool breeze in Los Olivios. On this side of the mountain you can still see some white smoke from the Whittier Fire (its burning towards Santa Barbara) but I didn't detect any smoke.

    From Los Olivios:
    image.jpeg

    Until last night only Tesla we saw on road was down here or around this area, except for at the Superchargers, was one silver MS in Solvang tonight. Surprised with Santa Barbara Tesla being so close.
     
  8. SMAlset

    SMAlset Active Member

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    #8 SMAlset, Jul 13, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2017
    Back in Bay area now, great trip in general. Loved traveling in our MS. Passed dozens of PG&E bucket trucks and a large truck hauling wire heading southbound towards Lake Cachuma around Los Alamos around noon. Northbound passed L.A. County Fire and Kern County Fire vehicles (helping out/returning home?).

    We did see a new fire, the Garza Fire (30,000+ acres/39% containment), which we first noticed off in the distance from as far south as Templeton/Paso Robles going northbound on 101. These photo were taken around San Miguel.

    image.jpeg image.jpeg

    The fire is actually much closer to Kettleman City so if you're traveling I-5 instead of 101, you'll probably have a better view of it, and possibly experience smoke and ash. The winds seemed to be blowing in that direction.

    Speaking of winds, we encountered good headwinds northbound until before Salinas. Lost several percent of range according to nav.
     
  9. SMAlset

    SMAlset Active Member

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    #9 SMAlset, Jul 20, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2017
    Since Yosemite is a popular travel destination for many during the summer, wanted to mention that the Detwiler Fire just to the south of Yosemite near the town of Mariposa should be a concern. Check CalFire for the latest updates and road closures in the area ( http://www.fire.ca.gov/current_incidents/incidentdetails/Index/1672 ). Our news this morning said that the town of Mariposa has been put under Evacuation Order and it's already 48,000 acres and only 7% contained. Very steep rugged terrain. CalFire reports: "The fire continues to threaten power lines to the S. of the incident which supply power to Yosemite National Park."
     
  10. Lloyd

    Lloyd Well-Known Member

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    Start of fire near Santa Maria on Hwy 166 last week.

    52115573168__3E81AF73-A7CD-4B8E-9F2F-84A2BA30C251.jpg
     
  11. RclKag

    RclKag BC CND P85+

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    Any problems/outages with the supercharges along the I5 from Seattle to Las Vegas due to the wildfires?
     

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