It started out yesterday, when we heard there was a small fire in Ramona which is quite a ways up the road from us toward the desert. Next thing we know – door bell is going constantly, and someone banging on our door at 2:30am this morning! Our Neighbor – alerting us that the fire has become a monster and is heading our way. We woke up, turned to the local news channel, and started to follow this impending disaster taking place. At 4:30am we received our “reverse 911” phone call urging us to pack, get ready for evacuation and sit tight waiting for the Authorities to give the word to get out.
It is now 11:00am – the sun is completely hidden by the thick smoke and the fire is 0% contained due to high Santa Anna winds that typically come howling towards the coast off the desert. This wind is strong – 50 miles an hour constant gusts, usually dies down at sunset but this time it has been unrelenting, howling through the night adding fuel to the fire.
We took a drive to the office, and couldn’t believe the difference in temperature and visibility. Clear blue skies, not a breeze at all, very strange.
Being back at home now, we have been informed that if it becomes necessary the authorities are going to turn off the gas and electric for safety issues. Added to that we have been asked to stay off cell phones to leave as much of the airwaves free and open for the crew that are battling this monster. Sadly, the aircraft that do the drops are unable to take off due to these raging winds, and poor visibility. Crews and resources are being flown in from neighboring States, and by tomorrow will have more than 15 helicopters in the air doing drops, as well as fixed wing – if the wind stops.
We live in San Marcos, so you will see one of the visuals of the area below that will give you some idea as to location and spread of the fire. The current wind direction is westerly which is in our path. So…we are sitting tight, waiting for the evacuation orders to come from the authorities. The news is grim, many homes have been leveled – the stats are going to be high…