Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Belgium that is home to the world's deepest swimming pool.


From WikiPedia:

Nemo 33 is a recreational diving center in Brussels, Belgium that is home to
the world's deepest swimming pool. The pool itself consists of a submerged
structure with flat platforms at various depth levels. The pool has two large
flat-bottomed areas at depth levels of 5m (16 ft) and 10m (32 ft), and a large
circular pit descending to a depth of 33m (108 ft). It is filled with
2,500,000 litres of non-chlorinated, highly filtered spring water maintained
at 30°C (86°F) and contains several simulated underwater caves at the 10m depth level. There are numerous underwater windows that allow outside visitors to look into the pools at various depths. The complex was designed by Belgian diving expert John Beernaerts as a multi-purpose diving instruction, recreational, and film production facility, and opened in 2004.

You can take only a few items of your own dive kit (computer, mask, pool fins) but no BCD, fins that require booties, regulators(unless they have an integrated air linked to your computer - but no DIN fittings at all). torches, etc... You are not allowed to practice any skills unless you have an instructor in your group.

A Fitting Memorial: The George W. Bush Sewage Plant

A Fitting Memorial: The George W. Bush Sewage Plant
Satire at the ballot box to ‘honor’ Bush

by Marisa Lagos

If you’ve attended an event or festival in San Francisco lately - or even just hung out at a city park - you’ve probably seen them.0624 05

Admittedly, they’re hard to miss. Someone in the group is usually toting a large American flag, and another is often carrying a boom box blaring patriotic music. Sometimes one of them dresses up as Uncle Sam.

They’re the Presidential Memorial Commission of San Francisco, but don’t let the serious name fool you. The group’s intentions are in the gutter: They want to rename the Oceanside Water Pollution Control Plant the George W. Bush Sewage Plant come January, when the next president is sworn in.

During the inauguration, the group also wants supporters to participate in a “synchronized flush”- a way to send a gift to the renamed plant, which supporters say, would be a “fitting monument to this president’s work.”

It sounds like a harmless joke, or maybe a college civics lesson gone awry. But the handful of friends who dreamed this up over beers one night say they have already collected 8,500 signatures in support of the plan - 1,300 more than the minimum needed to put the question to city voters in November. When they submit the signatures in July, election workers will have to verify that at least 7,168 are from registered city voters for the measure to qualify for the ballot.

“It’s a very simple yes or no question, and there’s no real fiscal impact- just the cost of relettering the sign in front of the plant,” said organizer Brian McConnell. “This is the way the democratic process is supposed to work, even though it’s a silly idea in some people’s eyes.”

Silly might be an understatement. Howard Epstein, chair of the San Francisco Republican Party, called the measure an abuse of the system and “loony bin direct democracy.” He vowed to “use all means” to defeat the measure if it qualifies for the ballot. That includes those very expensive glossy mailers, he said.

“There’s no use other than to make these nutcases feel good,” Epstein said. “It’s typical San Francisco crazies.”

Still, most people approached on a recent Sunday seemed open to the idea, even if they all didn’t stop to sign the petition.

Bright Winn, a San Francisco plumber, enthusiastically gave his signature to the cause.

“(Bush) has always done well for the affluent of America, and anyone that does well for the affluent should be named for the effluent,” he said.

The idea behind the renaming runs the gamut from the humorous (”Clean up the mess caused by Bush!” one supporter shouted ) to the sarcastic (”No other president in American history has accomplished so much in such a short time,” the group’s Web site reads) to the philosophical.

Satire, McConnell said, is one of the great American traditions.

“Fifty years from now in a civics class, students will learn about the Lincoln Memorial, that other presidents are on Mount Rushmore - and George W. Bush got a sewage plant,” he said. “It will prompt people to ask why, and they can discuss the Iraq war, and everything that led to it. People want to forget bad moments of history, and this is our way of making sure that doesn’t happen.”

To be fair, there are already other tributes to President Bush, including a Stockton elementary school and, of course, the presidential library planned in Dallas.

Organizers of the petition drive believe the measure will pass, noting that 2006’s Proposition J calling for the impeachment of Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney passed with 58 percent of the vote.

The biggest opposition in this Democratic stronghold, McConnell said, is people who oppose naming anything after the 43rd president.

Officials at the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission, which owns the plant, say they get the humorous intent. But they note that the plant is an award-winning facility that keeps the city’s streets and the ocean clean.

“If you are looking for a place to make a negative statement about the Bush administration’s impact on the environment, this would be the last place to do it,” agency spokesman Tony Winnicker said.

For more information about the Presidential Memorial Commission of San Francisco: presidentialmemorial.

Window cleaner survives nine-storey plunge with big 'wedgie'

Window cleaner survives nine-storey plunge with big 'wedgie'

Article from: The Courier-Mail

By Greg Stolz

June 24, 2008 03:05pm

A WINDOW cleaner has escaped a nine-storey fall from a Gold Coast tower with a fractured arm - and a broken pelvis from the super "wedgie" from his harness.

Police said the incident happened next to the Surfers Paradise police station.

Witnesses, including police officers from the station, reported hearing a thud and seeing the man suspended limp in the air hanging from his harness.

The man, 20, an abseiler from Robina who cleans windows, fell about 25m until his feet hit an awning on the side of the Solaire building in Ferny Ave.

He appeared to have ankle injuries and was in a lot of pain, but he retained his sense of humour, telling co-workers that he had "a big wedgie" (from his harness).

The force of his impact dislodged a 5m steel beam, which crashed to the ground.

Fellow window cleaner David Luke said he was on the roof when he heard "three big bangs".

"He's lucky to be alive," Mr Luke said.

"We have no idea how this happened."

Another of the men's co-workers said the accident was bizarre.

He said the man was well-trained and very experienced.

The man was taken to Gold Coast Hospital in a serious but stable condition.

Workplace Health and Safety Inspectors are on the scene.

Today's accident comes just three days after two men died at Broadbeach when a swing scaffold collapsed.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

George Carlin Video Tribute

As you've no doubt heard, the legendary George Carlin died yesterday at 71. A lot of people in the comments on my first post have asked for a tribute, and I think it's only appropriate. You can expect several more Carlin-centric posts to follow this one, but I thought we should start with a video retrospective.

World's most efficient solar dish?

World's most efficient solar dish?

June 23, 2008 10:00 AM PDT
Caption text by Zoƫ Slocum

A team led by Massachusetts Institute of Technology students last week successfully tested a prototype of what it says may be the "most cost-efficient solar-power system in the world," revolutionizing global energy production.

The 12-foot-wide dish, made of a lightweight frame of thin aluminum tubing and mirror strips, concentrates sunlight by a factor of 1,000, according to the Cambridge, Mass., university. It can create heat intense enough to melt a bar of steel.

The dish is the latest in a slew of sun-centric projects with which MIT has been associated. Other notables include solar-powered homes (it's been working on those since 1939), a pilot solar cell plant in Lexington, Mass., and more recently, funding 30 five-year fellowships in solar energy with a $10 million grant.

Here, Matt Ritter, Doug Wood, Spencer Ahrens (the team leader, who just received his master's in mechanical engineering from MIT), and Micah Sze begin assembling the dish by mounting one of the mirror panels, measuring 10 inches by 12 feet, in place.

Other team members include Broad Institute engineer Eva Markiewicz and MIT materials science student Anna Bershteyn.

Credit: David Chandler/MIT

Man Gouges Alligator's Eyes After Arm Ripped Off To Escape Attack

Man Gouges Alligator's Eyes After Arm Ripped Off To Escape Attack

EDT June 24, 2008
A man whose arm was ripped off his body by an 11-foot alligator survived the attack by gouging its eyes during its death roll.

IMAGES: Alligator Rips Off Man's Arm
Kasey Edwards, 18, was swimming with some friends at Nubbin Slough, a canal near Lake Okeechobee, Sunday when he was attacked."(The alligator) took my left arm off about 4 inches above the elbow," Edwards said. "It was a pretty humbling experience."Edwards said he was face-to-face with the gator during the attack."I looked back and the gator surfaced and I looked him right in the face and stared at him for 10 seconds," Edwards said from Holmes Regional Medical Center in Central Florida.Edwards said during the fight with the alligator, he was not aware he was missing an arm."He dragged me under the water five times," Edwards said. "Finally, (the arm) ripped off and I wasn't aware at the time. (It) hit me in my stomach and knocked the wind out of me and I dug and took my finger and gouged its eye. It spun and turned around and went away from me. (I) didn't know I was missing an arm until I was swimming back."The alligator was captured and Edwards' arm was found inside its stomach, the Palm Beach Post reported.The arm was too damaged to reattach, officials said.Edwards said his two friends brought him to shore and kept him from bleeding to death. He said he owes his life to them.

When threatened, a few African frogs can morph toes into claws

When threatened, a few African frogs can morph toes into claws

By: Harvard University

CAMBRIDGE, Mass., June 23, 2008 -- Biologists at Harvard University have determined that some African frogs carry concealed weapons: When threatened, these species puncture their own skin with sharp bones in their toes, using the bones as claws capable of wounding predators.

The unusual defense mechanism is described by Harvard's David C. Blackburn, James Hanken, and Farish A. Jenkins, Jr., in a forthcoming issue of the journal Biology Letters.

"It's surprising enough to find a frog with claws," says Blackburn, a doctoral student in Harvard's Department of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology. "The fact that those claws work by cutting through the skin of the frogs' feet is even more astonishing. These are the only vertebrate claws known to pierce their way to functionality."

"Most vertebrates do a much better job of keeping their skeletons inside," he adds.

Blackburn first became aware of the clawed frogs while conducting fieldwork in the central African nation of Cameroon. When he picked up one of the hulking fist-sized frogs, it flailed its hind legs violently, scratching him and drawing blood.

Back in the U.S., Blackburn examined museum specimens of 63 African frog species. He noticed that in 11 species -- all in the genera Astylosternus, Trichobatracus, and Scotobleps and all native to central Africa -- the bones at the ends of the toes were pointed and hooked, with smaller, free-floating bones at their tips. Eventually he determined that these small nodules at the tips of the frogs' feet were connected to the rest of the toe by a collagen-rich sheath.

"These nodules are also closely connected to the surrounding skin by dense networks of collagen," Blackburn says. "It appears they hold the skin in place relative to these claw-like bones, such that when the frog flexes a certain muscle in the foot, the sharp bone separates from the nodule and bursts through the skin."

This claw-like structure is no conventional claw, though: It is pure bone, free of the keratin sheath that normally surrounds vertebrate claws. And unlike a claw that retracts into a specialized structure in an animal's foot, as in cats, the site where the frogs' foot bones emerge appears to be covered with ordinary skin.

While these frogs were mentioned in the scientific literature on a few occasions from 1900 to 1925, they are generally little-known in the U.S., appearing in few museum collections. Even the handful of researchers who wrote about them a century ago often misinterpreted the piercing of the skin as damage incurred during preservation of specimens.

The frogs are widely roasted and eaten in Cameroon, where hunters -- evidently well aware of the risk of injury -- go to great lengths to avoid handling them when alive.

"Cameroonian hunters will use long spears or machetes to avoid touching these frogs," Blackburn says. "Some have even reported shooting the frogs."

Of more than 5,500 known frog species, Blackburn and his colleagues found just 11 with claws, and speculate there may be another couple of similarly equipped species.

Blackburn plans to study live specimens of the African frogs to determine whether retraction of the foot bones back into the body is an active or a passive process, and how the damaged skin regenerates after the claws are deployed.

"We suspect, since the frog does suffer a fairly traumatic wound, that they probably use these claws infrequently, and only when threatened," Blackburn says.

Blackburn, Hanken, and Jenkins' work was funded by the National Science Foundation's AmphibiaTree project and by a Putnam Expeditionary Grant from Harvard's Museum of Comparative Zoology.

Monday, June 23, 2008

National Preparedness Level: 3 (On a scale from 1 to 5)

Cal Lightning 0623National Preparedness Level: 3 (On a scale from 1 to 5)

Information updated on June 23, 2008 5:42 PM

Fire Pictures Gallery

Current Situation:

Initial attack was heavy with 517 new fires. 26 new large fires started and 6 large fires were contained.

Northern Operations received over 3,200 strikes on Saturday June 21. Lightning was occuring on all the forests and units east of I 5 at that time. As of 8:00 p.m., 602 new fires for a total of 2,918 acres started on Saturday, June 21.

On Sunday, 309 new fires for 14,137 acres were located.

A significant dry lightning event hit California over the weekend. In the past two days, 1,080 new fires were reported in California. Currently, California has 25 large fires that have burned more than 90,000 acres. Evacuation orders are in effect for several fires. New large fire activity was also reported in Arizona, Nevada and Texas.

Image: MODIS remote heat detection. Click the image to view full size. Image as of June 23, 7:20 a.m.

Post your questions, comments or pictures on the NorCal Lightning Blog

Fire Activity
Year to date
2007 Fire Season
10-Year Average
Number of Fires
Acres Burned
Incident Name
Estimate of Containment
Structures Lost
Northern California Lightning Series

CA lightning MapVarious counties and locations throughout Northern California within the CAL FIRE responsibility area only More incidents (Forest Service) below.

Siskiyou Unit: All 8 fires have been contained for a total of 10 acres. The Klamath National Forest has a Complex near Happy Camp that is 600 acres with no containment.

Humboldt-Del Norte Unit: 51 fires for more than 900 acres, with 4 new fires today. The Paradise Fire is Northeast of Shelter Cove and is 600 acres and 5% contained, The Redcrest Fire is 30 acres, the High Fire is in Humboldt Redwood State Park with unknown acreage or containment, the Carson Fire is 40 acres and 50% contained, the Hansen Fire is 2 acres with unknown containment, the Williams Fire is 25 acres and 50% contained, In the BLM Headwaters Forest there are three additional small fires buring.

Mendicino Unit: 90 fires have been reported for a total of more than 7,625 acres. The Orr Fire is 200 acres and has evacuations of the Orr Springs Resort and 50 homes in the area, the Navarro Fire is 1,400 acres and 5% contained, the Cherry fire is 50 acres and 50% contained, the Foster Fire is 50 acres and 50% contained, the Table Mtn. Fire is 1,000 acres and 5% contained, the Mallo Pass Fire is 800 acres, and the Juan Creek fires (2) are at 100 acres each. There are 8 additional fires at 30 acres each.

San Mateo-Santa Cruz Unit: 15 fires have been reported. The Quarry Fire is located near the base of San Bruno Mountain is 300 acres and 85% contained.

Amador-El Dorado Unit: All fires for a total of 80 acres have been contained.

Nevada-Yuba-Placer Unit: 34 fires reported. The fire of concern is the Foresthill (formerly Mosquito) Fire which is 75 acres and 90% contained. Mosquito Ridge Road remains closed at Foresthill Road until 6 p.m. today.

Butte Unit: 27 fires for a total of more than 1,397 acres. The Rim Fire has burned 50 acres with unknown containment. Butte County Sheriff’s department is effecting a Precautionary Evacuation Advisory for the Lake Concow Area for a lighting fire in excess of 100 acres burning off of Rim Rd. (Also referred to as Andy Mountain Rd.) in the Concow area. The American Red Cross is setting up an evacuation shelter at the Spring Valley School at 2771 Pentz Rd. off of Hwy 70. There are four road closures in effect: Concow Rd. from Yellow Wood Rd. north to the end of the pavement on Concow Rd, Concow Rd. from Nelson Bar to end of pavement, Rim Rd. (also known as Andy Mtn. Rd) from Hwy 70 to end of Rim Rd., Deadwood from Hwy 70 to Concow Rd.

Tehama-Glen Unit: 75 fires for a total of 2,146 acres. EAST SIDE (Paynes Creek Area)- The Antelope Fire is 600 acres and 20% contained, the Ishi Fire is 60 acres and 50% contained and the Mill Creek Fire is 417 acres with no containment. WEST SIDE (36W) - The Salt Creek Fire is 40 acres with no containment and the Vestal Fire 181 acres and 25% contained. The Tehama-Glenn Unit Information Number is (530) 528-5124.

Shasta-Trinity Unit: Over 130 fires for a total of 5,000 acres. Shasta-Trinity Unit Information (530) 225-2510

Sonoma-Lake-Napa Unit: 6 fires with 4 contained. Two fires for a total of 7,250 acres. Over 300 homes threatened. The Wild Fire is burning near Napa West of Fairfield. The Walker Fire is burning in the Indian Valley Reservoir in Lake County and is 2,000 acres with 0% containment.

Lassen-Modoc Unit: 45 total fires for 500+ acres

Tuolumne-Calavares Unit: 9 fires for a total of 5,720 acres. All fires have been contained. Currently the counties of Tuolumne and Calaveras are experiencing heavy smoke in low lying areas due to fires caused by heavy lightning activity yesterday.

Madera-Mariposa-Merced Unit: 15 fires reported
The Cunningham Complex (5 fires total) are burning 3,150 acres total, the Stumpfield Fire is burning 2 acres, the Indian Peak Fire is burning 60 acres, and the Oliver Fire is burning in the Sequoia National Forest. The Sequoia National Forest has reported 25 fires.

Lightning Map courtesy Tahoe National Forest. Click the image for full size pdf.


CAL FIRE Sonoma-Lake-Napa Unit. Northeast of Napa and Northwest of Fairfield. Mandatory evacuations in place on Joyce Lane, Twin Sisters Road and Wooden Valley Roads in Napa and Solano County. Voluntary evacuations in the Green Valley subdivision.

300 structures currently threatened. 1 residence and 1 outbuilding have been destroyed.

An evacuation center has been established at the Fairfield Community Center.


Tahoe June LightningOn June 21 2008, 92 lightning strikes were detected within the Tahoe NF Forest boundary.

Click on the image to view full size map.

The forest currently has approximately 25 lightning fires, and active suppression is underway. To better manage the fires, they have been split in to two complexes:

American River Complex (jointly managed by USFS and Cal Fire):

Peavine: 80 acres, difficult terrain.

Foresthill fire, 70 acres, 5.5 miles east of Foresthill near the 96 road, primarily backing down the slope. No structures are threatened. 70% contained. Expected containment: 06/23 at 6:00 p.m. Mosquito Ridge road is closed to public traffic. Campers in the French Meadows area are being routed out via Robinson Flat and the Foresthill Divide road.

Gov fire (near Government Spring): 800-1,000 acres on south facing slope in NF American River canyon.

Ford Point: 1 fire out, 1 fire contained.

Westville (one mile north of townsite): 30 acres.

Red Star: .1 acre, heading towards the prior Star fire.

Yuba River Complex

25 Fire (Cal-Ida): 200 acres

Omega #1: 2 acres, contained, in patrol status.

Omega #2: 3 acres, contained, in patrol status.

Scotchman (Scotchman Creek): 500 acres.
USFS, Nevada County Sheriff, and Washington Volunteer FD are advising residents in the Maybert road area to prepare for a possible evacuation. A line of retardant has been dropped in Skotchman's drainage to stop the fire's progression towards the town of Washington.

A call for all firefighters in Nevada County has gone out, for a possible contingency plan for the town of Washington.

Fall (Fall Creek drainage): 1,300 acres. The fire was very active earlier this afternoon, but fire behavior seems to have diminished as the winds have died down. CHP has closed the Bowman Lake road and is evacuating persons in the Rucker Lake area. Road closures include Bowman Rd from Hwy 20 and FS25 Rd to Cal Ida from Hwy 49. Holding at Bowman Lake Road.

Gaston: 12 acres.

Clear (Clear Creek drainage): 2 acres.

A type II management team is assuming command of the Yuba River complex on Monday June 23.

Cold Fire

Summary: Fire fighters continue to battle multiple fires started by dry lightning on June 21. The highest priority for today is the Cold Fire, a 640 acre blaze that lies four miles south of Highway 70 and the communities of Greenhorn and Spring Garden. The Plumas Hot Shots (a highly trained hand crew), with engines and dozers, will continue to build fire line to prevent further spread of the fire north toward the Middle Fork of the Feather River and Highway 70. Expected wind gusts today cause concern for fire spotting beyond fire lines. Fire movement into Nelson Creek is also expected.

Several fires in the Feather River Canyon along Highway 70 create extreme hazard due to flaming debris rolling downhill. Crews will continue to scout fires, establish drop points and safety zones, and construct line where possible. Fires in the Bucks Lake Wilderness, although at high elevation, continue to burn with unusual intensity for this time of year.

Fire fighters are prepared to locate and attack new starts during the day. County Sheriff Departments are working with the Forest Service to coordinate any potential evacuations. No evacuations are currently in effect, although residents of Spring Garden and Greenhorn have been contacted.

Fire Behavior: Dead and green fuel moisture levels are near historic lows on the Plumas and all fuel types may burn rapidly with high intensity. A warming and drying trend is expected over the next few days with lightning storms possible toward the end of the week. Flaming debris rolling downhill toward the base of unburned canyons is a concern. Fire intensity is expected pick up in late morning as valley inversion layers lift.

Weather: Forecast for today is for temperatures in the upper 80's with humidity of 12-22% and winds SSW and upslope at 6 to 12mph. Smoke will settle into valleys with night time inversion.

Current Situation: Fires are being evaluated. Additional resources, including engines, crews and aircraft have been ordered. The Incident Command has been set up at the Feather River College in Quincy.

Current Forest and Road Closures: Visitors and residents should be aware that conditions may change quickly and roads and major highways may need to be closed for public safety.


Date/Time of Fire Start: Saturday, June 21, 2008. 3:30 p.m. Cause: Lightning

Description/Location: Approximately 23 wildland fires resulted from Saturday's lightning storm. Due to firefighter's quick response all of these fires found to date have been contained. Crews continue to mop up and patrol these fires.

The Soldier fire located 3 miles northeast of Pollock Pines and north of Highway 50/American River was 100% contained at 50 acres as of 5:00 p.m. Monday.

Weather Conditions: Favorable weather conditions are expected over the next few days.

Structures Destroyed: None
Injuries: None
Evacuations: None
Road Closures: None

Butte County

Wildland burning in the Concow area, known as the Rim Fire.

Cause: Lightning Strikes.

Public Safety threat, if any: There is an immediate threat to all residents in the area of Concow Road north of Hoffman and all side roads in the area due to the fire known as the Empire Fire.

There is an immediate threat evacuation on Andy Mountain Road and Ponderosa Way to approximately one mile up Rim Mountain Road. Also, residents on Highway 70 between Fire Station 36 and Pulga are under immediate threat evacuation.

Road Closures: Highway 70 is closed at Big Bend.

Shelter: Residents and animals are being evacuated to Spring Valley School at 2771 Pentz Road off of Highway 70.

Residents are being evacuated to Spring Valley School at 2771 Pentz Road off of Highway 70.

Four roads closed:

1. Concow Road from Yellow wood Rd to n end of the pavement
2. Concow Rd from Nelson Bar Rd to the end of the pavement
3. Rim Rd aka Andy Mtn Rd from highway 70 to the end of Rim Rd
4. Deadwood Rd from Highway 70 to the Concow Rd

Sawmill Peak: On the East side of the West Branch drainage.

Cohasset: 6 fires - 3 contained. No threats to structures.

Butte Creek: 2 fires, burned together, contained.

Feather Falls area: 7 fires, the largest one is at 10 acres. These fires are burning in very steep and remote areas. No threat to structures.

The 500 acre fire in Branch III burning on the east side of the West Branch of the Feather River poses an potential threat to residents in the community of Magaila.


CAL FIRE San Benito - Montery Unit Hollister/Panoche area.Lightning-caused fire. The forward spread of the fire has slowed. The fire is burning in light flasshy fuels, over steep terrain.

Whitehurst / Hummingbird
90 and 50

Santa Clara, West of Gilroy and Morgan Hill. Lightning-caused fire.


# 2 miles West of Morgan Hill
# Forward spread has slowed
# 850 acres

# 90% contained, making good progress
# 1200 Homes threatened
# Temp 80's, RH >20%

Hummingbird Fire -Many of the residents evacuated are being allow to return to their homes.

The Whitehurst Fire is actively burning in extremely rugged terrain and in heavy fuels. There is no current threat.


* Highway 152 at the Santa Clara and Santa Cruz county line
* 200 acres actively burning in heavy fuels
* 50% contained, making good progress
* No significant values at risk
* Temp 87, RH 15%, DP 34, Wind NE @ 10, Elevation 1859' (Source Diablo Grande)

Lime Complex

Lime 0623Location: 5 miles south of Hyampom and 14 miles west of Hayfork, California

Date and Time of Fire Start: June 20, 2008 @ 5:00 p.m.
Cause: Lightning

Estimated Fire Size: 4,000 Acres Estimated Fire Containment: 0%
Estimated Expected Containment: TBD

Committed Resources: 531 total personnel that includes 15 Crews, 6 Helicopters, 24 Engines, 2 Dozers, 10 Water Tenders, and fire support personnel
Operational Objectives: Protect lives and property; reduce the number of larger problem fires by maintaining an effective initial attack capability and by strategically managing smaller fires with high potential for spread; strategically plan for management of all fires; and keep fires within the South Fork Management Unit.

Fire Activity: Firefighters observed creeping, backing, and flanking fire. Short crowning runs in the timber are possible. Firefighters expect fire behavior to increase when the smoke inversion lifts in the late afternoon.

Remarks: NorCal Interagency Incident Management Team II continues to manage the Lime Complex for the Shasta-Trinity National Forest and will transition with a National Type I Incident Management Team to assist with the management of the fires located north of Hayfork near Hyampom Valley and Pattison Peak areas. The Lime Complex is comprised of over 70 fires ranging in size from 1 to over 400 acres. Of the 70 fires, 18 are contained. A number of fires are located in remote areas with steep terrain and little or no access. Fire managers have identified priority fires and include three that pose the highest threat to life and property: The Slide (NW of Hyampom), Dead Shot (SE of Hayfork), and Telephone (SE of Hayfork) fires. A critical priority is maintaining the public’s use of Highways 3 and 36.

Past and Current Actions: Firefighters continue to attack more than 70 fires after an intense 2-day lightning storm which moved through the region last Friday and Saturday. Firefighters continue to gather data on the number, location and size of the fires within the Lime Complex which are burning in the South Fork Management Unit (SFMU) of the Shasta-Trinity National Forest. The Limedyke Lookout has been destroyed by one of the fires. Firefighting groups within the north and south branches of the Lime Complex have been established to meet management and operational objectives.

Evacuations and Closures: Fire managers continue to coordinate with Trinity County for possible evacuations in the areas of Hyampom Valley and Salt Creek areas.

SRF Lightning

Six Rivers National Forest

Afternoon winds increased fire behavoir dramatically on the Travis, Blue,Jake Allgood, Sims and Packsaddle

SHU Lightning Complex

Shasta-Trinity National Forest.

Have 130 known fires with approximately 34 of them unstaffed. New Fires continue to pop-up and existing fires have started to grow. Evacuation in progress for the Shingletown area. Local government water tender roll over with no injuries.

Observed Fire Behavior: Increased fire behavior and development with warm temperatures, low fuel moistures and RH’s.

SHU Lightning

Shasta-Trinity National Forest.

New fires continued to be found. Increased smoke and haze made finding new fires difficult.

Remarks: 31 confirmed fires 2 out 14 contained or controlled. 8 fires in active status with resources at scene. 7 fires unstaffed with resources ordered. Increased smoke haze has made finding new fires difficult.

Whiskeytown Complex

8 miles west of Redding Fire 5-2 reached Shasta Bally road which has been closed due to fire activity. Boulder Creek Falls Trail is also closed due to Fire 5-3. Other significant events were two new fires within the park boundary and two new fires entering park boundary from private land.

Observed Fire Behavior: Fires have seen moderated fire behavior all day with roll out being the main concern.

Mendocino Lightning

* Approx 90 fires, many in commercial timberland; about 60 unstaffed
* Total acreage at least 7 , 625
* Larger fires making significant runs

* Orr Fire , 100 acres, evacuation of Orr Springs Resort with 50 structures threatened, no containment, 5 homes destroyed
* Navarro Fire at 1400 acres, 5% contained, potential threat to 500 homes
* Cherry Fire , 50 acres, 50 % contained , evacuations cancelled.
* Foster Fire at 200 acres, several homes threatened, 0% contained, spread towards HUU
* Table Mtn. Fire 1000 acres, 5% contained, structures threatened
* Mallo Pass Fire (Elk Area) 800 acres, commercial timber, unstaffed.

* Cliff Fire (Coast end of Mtn View Road ), 800 acres.

* Juan Creek (Rockport Area), 2 fires at 100 acres each, 8 fires at 50 acres each, 0% containment

* Indian Fire (JDSF Indian Springs Campground) 100 acres, timber.

* County of Mendocino declared a state of emergency for all of Mendocino County on 6/22
* Mendocino County EOC activated

June Lightning

Location: UPPER LAKE, COVELO, GRINDSTONE Mendocino Unit.

Currently 49 fires with largest 250 acres. The Big incident is 100/150 acres. Ron Recker will be assuming the ICT3 tomorrow afternoon.

Observed Fire Behavior: Short flame lengths and backing fire. 30 structures threatened. No structures destroyed.

LMU June Lightning

Lassen-Modoc Counties

Significant Events: Precuationary evacuations of Little Valley.

Observed Fire Behavior: Significant fire growth (wind driven) on the Popcorn Fire.

HUU June Lightning

Humboldt-Del Norte, various locations throughout Humboldt County.

At least 50 fires for 300 acres. ICs continue to evaluate for effective suppression techniques. Several fires may require indirect attack with subsequent larger acreages.

Observed Fire Behavior: Fires continue to spread overnight. Rolling material is making containment difficult.

Planned Actions: Locate all active fires. Continue suppression activity on all staffed fires. Paradise fire is transitioning to indirect attack.

TGU Lightning

Tehama-Glenn Unit, Tehama County.

Continue to find new fires with no access and limited resources.

Observed Fire Behavior: Fires contained to surface with some spotting

Planned Actions: Prioritize and access fires.

Iron Complex

Shasta-Trinity National Forest, Junctions City California

Trinity Alps Wilderness area is being considered for closure. Many area's are being impacted by heavy smoke today.

Remarks: Some of the fires have grown together in the Ironside Mtn and Green Mtn. area's.

Observed Fire Behavior: Fires continue to have moderate ROS with some torching.

Siskiyou Complex

Southwest of Happy Camp, CA Start: 06/21/2008, Lightning. Significant Events: Type 2 team taking over fire at 1900

Observed Fire Behavior: Continued to back toward Dillon Creek Drainage, rolling out and making rapid uphill runs. No structures threatened.

Planned Actions: Type 2 team to transition and assess.

North Mountain

At least ten lightning fires were started Saturday across the Stanislaus National Forest after a series of storm cells passed over the Sierra Nevada Mountains. The fires were ignited between about 3 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. Saturday. Most fires were small and burned either a single tree or a few acres with low flame lengths. Patrols are monitoring their progress with some fires already contained.

The largest fire is located on the north side of the Tuolumne River Canyon near North Mountain. The North Mountain Fire is as large as 500 acres burning in trees and grasses dispersed among rocky terrain. The fire is moving towards the peak at North Mountain where a lookout tower and radio repeater station are located.

Four hand crews have been working on the fire and a type two team has been requested. In addition to the hand crews, other resources used to stop the spread of lightning caused fires include four air tankers, two helicopter, four engines, two dozers, a water tender, and several patrol units and overhead personnel.

Smoke will be seen and may impact residences in Tuolumne, Mariposa, Alpine and Calaveras counties.


Indian Valley Reservoir, Rapid ROS, long range spotting


Fire location: 3 miles south of Big Sur, Los Padres National Forest
Date/time started: June 21, 2008 / 1 pm
Percent contained: 0% Fire line to be constructed: unknown
Expected containment: not determined Expected control: not determined
Suppression costs to date: unknown Structures threatened: 75
Cause: lightning Firefighters injured to date: 0
Terrain/vegetation/difficulties: steep rocky terrain; heavy fuels—chaparral, grass, trees; limited access; drought conditions; dry gusty winds.
Total personnel: Approximately 200 including engine and hand crews.

Current situation: The Gallery Fire burned actively through the night north of Partington Ridge and north into Grimes Canyon. Structure protection engines were in place along Partington Ridge and along Highway 1. Crews are holding the fire at the North Coast Ridge Road and Highway 1; however, both the north and south flanks of the fire remain open. The fire is moving primarily northward.
Structures damaged or destroyed: No structures are known to have been damaged or destroyed.
Weather predicted for today: not available
Evacuations: Approximately 75 residences and businesses were evacuated during the night between Partington Ridge and Graves Canyon. The Red Cross has established an evacuation center at the Big Sur Grange Hall.
Closures and road status: Highway 1 is closed between the Ventana Inn on the north and Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park on the south. The Ventana Inn is open. Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park is closed.
Agencies: U.S. Forest Service, CAL FIRE, Big Sur Volunteer Fire Dept., California State Parks, Monterey County and other cooperators.
Incident Commander: Unified Command with Incident Commander Mike Kremke of the U.S. Forest Service and Chief Frank Pinny of the Big Sur Volunteer Fire Department


Indians 0618Location: 11 miles west of King City in the Monterey Co. portion of Los Padres National Forest. It is burning largely within the Ventana Wilderness.
Date/time started: June 8, 2008 / 12:36 pm

Fire line to be constructed: 38 miles

Suppression costs to date: $27,600,000
Structures threatened: 1,064 residences, 265 other

Cause: Escaped campfire

Firefighters injured to date: Nine.

Terrain/vegetation: Steep and rocky with grass, chaparral and trees
Difficulties: Steep terrain, limited access, heavy fuels and drought conditions, along with dry, gusty winds.

Fire activity today: The voluntary evacuation notice for upper Pine Canyon (above paved roads), and an advisory to residents of lower Pine Canyon and Thompson Canyon remain in effect. The evacuation for cabins in the Santa Lucia Tract and six residences on private land at the north edge of Fort Hunter Liggett remain in effect. A large animal advisory has been issued for Arroyo Seco Road and Reliz Canyon Road. This advisory recommends the removal of large animals and livestock from areas along Reliz Canyon Road and Arroyo Seco Road between the Elm Street bridge and the Arroyo Seco Recreation area.

Fire activity on the east flank was minimal today near Pine and Thompson Canyons with little mop-up required. The firing operation resulted in the establishment of a large black area between those canyons and the main part of the fire. The fire continued to slowly move north toward the Arroyo Seco area with occasional runs in Santa Lucia and Horse Canyons that were predominantly fuel and terrain driven. A large smoke column was visible today due to that fire activity. Crews continued to strengthen containment lines on the northwest side running between Escondido Campground and Santa Lucia Creek and on the north along Arroyo Seco Road.

The fire is expected to continue growing slowly to the north throughout the night with minimal humidity recovery. Little to no fire spread is expected in the south and east.

A portion of the Ventana Wilderness and adjacent forest lands are closed. Arroyo Seco-Indians and Cone Peak Roads are closed. Pine Canyon Road (at end of pavement) and Reliz Canyon Road at Elm, are closed except to residents. Memorial Campground, Escondido Campground, Arroyo Seco Campground and Day Use Area are closed. Coastal campgrounds and Nacimiento-Fergusson Road are open.

At/below 2000': 55-65 degrees, 30% relative humidity, winds light in the morning 1-4 mph. Above 2000': 65-75 degrees, 15-25% relative humidity, winds north to northeast 5-10 mph.

Closures and Road Status: A portion of the Ventana Wilderness and adjacent forest lands are closed. Arroyo Seco-Indians and Cone Peak Roads are closed. Pine Canyon Road (at end of pavement) and Reliz Canyon Road at Elm, are closed except to residents. Memorial Campground, Escondido Campground, Arroyo Seco Campground and Day Use Area are closed. Coastal Campgrounds and Nacimiento-Fergusson Road are open.

Agencies: U.S. Forest Service, CAL FIRE, Fort Hunter Liggett, Bureau of Land Management, Monterey County and other cooperators.

Incident Commander: The incident is being managed in Unified Command with Bill Molumby (California Interagency Incident Management Team 2); Rick Hutchinson (CAL FIRE); Chief Mike Crum (Fort Hunter Liggett).

Arroyo Seco Campground and Day Use Area Closed

June 15, 2008 --- 6:00 a.m.

The Indians Fire this morning is approximately 4 miles south of the Arroyo Seco Recreation Area and does not pose an immediate threat to the site. However, in anticipation of the fire's continued progression to the north, and in the interest of public safety, the Forest Service will close the Arroyo Seco Campground and Day Use Area at noon today, June 15. The site will remain closed until further notice.

The Arroyo Seco Recreation Area is approximately 14 miles west of the community of Greenfield, CA. This closure does not affect private lands in the area or the Arroyo Seco Road east of the recreation area.

For more information, contact the Indians Fire Information Center at (805) 961-5770 (8:00a.m. to 8p.m.).

Forest Supervisor Peggy Hernandez announced that she has closed until further notice a portion of Los Padres National Forest in Monterey County because of the Indians Fire emergency. According to Hernandez, the closure prohibits all public entry to national forest lands, trails, roads and recreation sites within the closed area.

The closed area includes Ventana Wilderness lands and other national forest lands east of the Arroyo-Seco Indians Road (Forest Road 19S09), north of the Nacimiento–Fergusson Road (Forest Road 22S01), east of and including the North Coast Ridge Trail (Forest Trail 3E10), and south of and including the Marble Peak Trail (Forest Trail 4E07).

The Arroyo Seco Indians Road is closed. Cone Peak Road is closed. Memorial and Escondido Campgrounds are closed.

The Arroyo Seco Campground and Day Use Area are open. Nacimiento-Fergusson Road is open. All Forest Service campgrounds on the Big Sur Coast are open.

"The decision to prohibit public entry in the Indians Fire area is out of concern for public and firefighter safety," said Hernandez. "This is a precautionary measure. As it has already demonstrated, the fire has the potential to spread very quickly and we don't want the public in harm's way."


Clover - WFU, Sequoia NF. FUMT (Beckman). Thirty-two miles north of Weldon, CA, started 05/31/2008 at 1455 hrs. Timber and brush. Increased fire activitiy with spotting up to 0.25 miles along the southern flank. Continued low fire intensity and little fire spread along the eastern, northern and western flanks.

The Pacific Crest Trail is currently open but many hikers are using alternate routes to bypass the fire. Warning signs are posted and hikers are discouraged from traveling at night. Hikers are encouraged to hike through the fire area before 1 pm. Actions: Contiinue to check fire spread. Monitor Fire behavior, spread and smoke

Elkhorn 2

Elkhorn 2, Humboldt-Toiyabe NF. Previously reported confine/contain fire. Forty-eight miles northeast of Tonopah, NV. Brush, hardwood slash, pinyon juniper. Creeping, smoldering and short upslope runs. Last narrative report unless significant activity occurs.

Windmill Road

Windmill Road, Texas Forest Service. Started on private land twenty-five miles southeast of Ozona, TX. Brush, pinyon pine, juniper, slash and grass. Minimal fire activity. Monitor status.

Sutton Ranch

Sutton Ranch, Texas Forest Service. Started on private land twenty-three miles southwest of Ozona, TX. Brush, pinyon pine, juniper, slash and grass. Minimal fire activity. Monitor status.


Bridger, Fort Carson FD. Twenty miles east of Thatcher, CO. Pinyon pine and juniper. Minimal fire behavior with isolated interior torching. Last report unless significant activity occurs.

Evans Road

The Evans Road Fire was reported on June 1 approximately 15 miles NW of Fairfield in the New Lake vicinity in eastern North Carolina, several miles south of Pocosin Lakes National Wildlife Refuge on private land. The fire resulted from a lightning strike. On the afternoon of June 3, the fire broke from containment, running 3,000 acres onto Pocosin Lakes National Wildlife Refuge. By late evening, the blaze had grown to approximately 8,000 acres. Pocosin Lakes National Wildlife Refuge is approximately 93,000-acres and is home to the endangered red wolf, black bear, hundreds of species of migratory birds, and a variety of other native wildlife. The refuge is a popular attraction for birders, wildlife photographers, as well as being a good hunting and fishing hot spot.

Windy weather and a limited water supply have complicated suppression efforts for firefighters. The fire is primarily burning in shrubby swamp lands which are very difficult to suppress in dry conditions due to the explosive fire movement through the shrubs and the large amounts of organic vegetation in the soil available to burn. The fire will likely linger for weeks in the soil until significant rainfall floods the swamp.

Continued active interior fire today with re-burn on all areas of the fire. Operational personnel continue to secure the portion of line along Evans Road using KG blades to widen containment lines. The fire continues to burn actively with single tree torching, creeping and smoldering in the remote, inaccessible area of the Refuge. Thunderstorms moved across the area with a large amount of lightning and strong out flow winds. A minimal amount of precipitation fell over the fire ranging from .02 to .29 inches, which lessened fire activity in the afternoon. Water Handling Operation continues on the western side of the fire, using canals, ditches, and high volume lift pumps to reinforce containment and assist mop-up efforts.

South 1

The South One wildland fire is burning in the Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge near Suffolk, Virginia. The fire started on June 9, 2008 as the result of logging equipment that caught on fire. The fire is burning primarily in downed and dead Atlantic White Cedar that was felled by Hurricane Isabel in 2003. The Southern Area Type II Incident Management Team, led by Incident Commander Tony Wilder, assumed command on June 12, 2008 at 0700.

Restrictions and Closures

Lake Drummond is closed. Railroad Ditch, West Ditch, Interior Ditch and Corapeake Ditch Roads are closed to the public. The area of the Refuge south of Corapeake Ditch Road is also closed. The remainder of Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge remains open for public use and enjoyment. All interior roads and all trails in Dismal Swamp State Park are closed to the public, but the Visitor Center remains open. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Lake Drummond Reservation, part of the Dismal Swamp Canal, is closed to visitors as a safety precaution. Contact the Corps at 757-201-7642 for more information. A temporary flight restriction remains in effect up to 3,000 feet above the fire.


Hulldale, Texas Forest Service. Started on private land thirty-two miles south of San Angelo, TX. Brush, pinyon pine, juniper, slash and grass. Creeping and smoldering. Residences threatened.


Rocky, Lincoln NF. IMT 2 (Cowie). Thirty-five miles west of Carlsbad, NM. Pinyon pine, juniper and grass. Moderate to high fire behavior. Structures and gas wells threatened.

West Fork

West Fork, Cimarron District, New Mexico State Forestry. IMT 2 (Reinarz). Twenty-eight miles west of Raton, NM. Mixed conifer and juniper with oak understory. Active surface fire with isolated torching. Natural gas pipeline threatened. Precipitation occurred over the fire area yesterday.


Bonney, Capitan District, New Mexico State Forestry. Thirty-one miles west of Roswell, NM. Pinyon pine, juniper and grass. Active fire behavior with rapid rates of spread. Residence threatened.

Stone Coal

Stone Coal - WFU, George Washington and Jefferson NF. Seven miles west of Fincastle, VA. Hardwood litter. Backing fire.

Walla Valley

Grand Canyon North Rim: about 9mi west of developed area; in vicinity of Walla Valley and Point Sublime.

Grand Canyon National Park fire management officials determined that weather, fuel, and air quality conditions were within acceptable parameters and began the Walla Valley Prescribed Burn on Saturday, June 21, at 6:21 p.m. The Walla Valley Prescribed Burn is somewhat unique in that it is intended to simulate natural fire events by using a point source ignition technique to mimic lightning ignitions, by allowing the ignition points to burn in all directions (within the prescribed boundaries) as naturally ignited fires would burn and by allowing the fire to burn over a period of approximately three weeks exposing it to a vairety of weather contions. It is expected that the effects of the Walla Valley Rx burn will more closely resemble a natural fire than the effects seen on most conventional prescribed burns.

The burn unit is comprised of a ponderosa pine dominated mixed conifer forest on the northern portion of the burn unit and a more pure ponderosa pine forest on the middle and southern portions of the unit. A small amount of pinon and juniper occur close to the rim edge; and gamble oak dominates the vegetation directly below the rim. A small test fire was ignited within the burn unit between 5:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m. on Saturday, June 21. The fire's behavior was assessed and determined to be within parameters, so blacklining along the north eastern boundary of the burn unit was initiated to secure that area.

Current Large Fires

Fire locations are based on data provided by the National Interagency Fire Center and are subject to change.

current large fires map

Large Incident - A wildfire of 100 acres or more occuring in timber, or a wildfire of 500 acres or more occuring in grass/sage.
Wildland Fire - Any nonstructure fire, other than prescribed fire, that occurs in the wildland.
Wildland Fire Use (WFU) Fire - A naturally ignited wildland fire that is managed to accomplish specific prestated resource management objectives in predefined geographic areas outlined in Fire Management Plans.
Map information provided courtesy of the UDSA Remote Sensing Application Center using data provided by the National Interagency Fire Center. The data is subject to change.

Weather Outlook:

California will be dry today with some local gusty winds along the coast and Sierra Mountains as well as cooler temperatures over the southern half of the state. Scattered wet and dry thunderstorms are expected over eastern Arizona, New Mexico and southern Colorado. Scattered thundershowers are on tap from Florida to Virginia.

Northern California: Not much change is expected over the next few days as a dry and stable westerly flow continues over the Geographic Area. Afternoon minimum RH’s and temperatures will be seasonable... warm and dry except near the coast where it will be cooler with higher RH than experienced there recently. Winds will mostly be driven by local terrain effects. Less wind is expected east of the Cascade/Sierra crest today than occurred yesterday. A more southerly flow is expected late this week that could lead to more thunderstorms near and east of the Cascade/Sierra crest starting Thursday.

Many thanks to the Fire Information Services for the updates!