[UPDATED 6:55 p.m.] Fire West of Weaverville

Kym Kemp / Sunday, Aug. 24 @ 6:16 p.m. /  Fire!

UPDATE 6:58 p.m.: Cal Fire has revised its estimate of acreage burned downwards to 580 acres. According to the Oregon Fire Incident Information report, the fire is now considered 45% contained. One structure was destroyed. There were two injuries.

Below is a rough map from Wildland Fire that shows the approximate area of the fire including where it began on Hwy 299.

UPDATE 5:55 p.m.: The Trinity County Sheriff’s Office just issued the following information:

As of 6:00PM, all evacuations will be lifted. The evacuation center will be closing.

Cal Fire states, “Favorable weather conditions with decreased winds allowed firefighters to make good progress overnight. Ground and air resources will continue to work toward strengthening and increasing containment lines today in addition to mopping up.”

UPDATE 12:14 p.m.: Caltrans issued a statement:

SR 299 from Weaverville to the Oregon Mountain summit is OPEN! Short closure in westbound #2 lane for emergency equipment at postmile 49.65-49.85.

UPDATE 11:35 a.m.:  Photographer Jed Medin has a series of frightening shots from last night’s windblown blaze. Here’s one below. See more of his photos by clicking here.

Fire engulfs a hill west of Weaverville. [Photo by Jed Medin.]

UPDATE 9:45 a.m.: Trinity County Sheriff’s Department updated information. They issued the following statement:

As of 8:00AM, all areas that were under a mandatory evacuation have been put on an advisory evacuation. 

The evacuation center at the Weaverville First Baptist Church will remain open until further notice.

UPDATE 8:01 a.m.: Red Cross tweeted,

UPDATE 8/25 7:03 a.m.: Cal Fire released information  a few minutes before seven a.m. that the fire is still 650 acres and 25% contained. They write that the following evacuations are still in effect and and evacuated people are welcome at the following place:

Evacuations: Mandatory for Weaver Bally Estates, Easter Ave.,Ridge Road, Weeks Road, Leslie Lane, Airport Road, East Weaver Creek, Red Hill Road, Barbara Road, 5 Cent Gulch Street, Red River Road, Browns Ranch Road and Brooks Road North of Highway 3 and Highway 299

Evacuation Center: Weaverville Elementary School, 31020 Highway 3 Weaverville, CA

Cal Trans says there is one lane piloted traffic through the affected area of 299—three miles west of Weaverville and to the junction with State Route 3..

UPDATE 10:44 p.m.:

UPDATE 9:55 p.m.: The Red Cross tweeted,

UPDATE 9:38 p.m.:  Video of earlier this evening from reader Megan Siebold‎,

UPDATE 9:16 p.m.: A Facebook page has started for Weaverville residents threatened by the fire. You can follow it here.

UPDATE 9:11 p.m.: KRCR News is reporting at least one structure burnt. For more information and photos, click here.

UPDATE 8:41 p.m.: Cal Fire is saying,

The fire is currently burning at a rapid rate of spread. Extremely steep terrain and winds are making containment difficult for firefighters. Numerous ground and air resources are working on the fire with additional units responding.  

UPDATE 8:39 p.m.: Here is an image that shows the fire right after it started about 4:30 p.m..

Just after the fire started around 4:30 p.m. [Photo provided by Rebekah Gobin Harmon]

UPDATE 8:32 p.m.: Yuba.net is listing the fire at 650 acres.

UPDATE 8:27 p.m.: Rachel Dhe posted a photo on our Facebook and the following explanation, “We are sitting at the west end of town, we can see the fire. Cal Trans says we will be escorted through by CHP.”


UPDATE 8:23 p.m.: KRCR Reporter tweeted,

UPDATE 8:14 p.m.: Trinity County Sheriff just sent out this information,

On August 25, 2014 starting at 8:00AM, the Red Cross evacuation center will be moving to the Weaverville First Baptist Church located on Highway 299 across from Mountain View Rd.

UPDATE 8:11 p.m.: Incredible video shot by KRCR News. Click here.

UPDATE 8:04 p.m.: Caltrans in the area is tweeting,

UPDATE 7:44 p.m.: Trinity County Sheriff’s Office just added additional evacuations. They wrote,

Additional MANDATORY evacuations are as follows: Kelso St, Mulligan St, Willow Ave, Manzanita St, Reservoir Rd, Town Reservoir Rd, Tom Bell Rd, Angel Hill Rd, Brashaw Rd, Benoist Ln. 

UPDATE 7:33 p.m.: Cal Fire tweet:

UPDATE 7:26 p.m.: Wildland Fire says scanner reports are indicating, “Per [Incident Commander,] 450 ac burning toward area of Weaverville Airport and Hwy 3 at this time. 30 to 45 min before Airport is expected to be impacted by the fire.” 

UPDATE 7:17 p.m.: Reports from readers indicating that some traffic is getting through. Pilot cars are escorting traffic.

UPDATE 7:08 p.m.: Two photos provided by Jim Irving who is stuck on Oregon Summit. The view is looking east.


UPDATE 7:05 p.m.: Smoke on the Satellite and radar. Image provided by the US National Weather Service.


UPDATE 7:01 p.m.: Caltrans says, State Route 299 is closed from three miles west of Weaverville to the Junction of State Route 3 in Weaverville.

UPDATE 6:43 p.m.: Aircraft fighting the Oregon Fire: 

From a reader.

UPDATE 6:39 p.m.: Trinity County Sheriff press release:

The Trinity County Sheriff’s Office is issuing a mandatory fire evacuations for the following Weaverville areas: 

Leslie Lane, Weaver Bally Rd, Weaver Bally Estates, Fisher Price Lane, Ridge Rd, Easter Avenue, Barbara Avenue, Garden Gulch, Browns Ranch Rd, Squires Lane, East Weaver Creek Rd, Airport Rd, Brooks Lane, Squires Lane. 

The Red Cross evacuation center is located at the Weaverville Elementary School.

UPDATE 6:34 p.m.: Cal Fire tweet:

Homes threatened by the fast growing fire.[Photo provided by a reader.]

UPDATE 6:27 p.m.: Map from here.

UPDATE 6:22 p.m.: Cal Fire is now saying 200 acres! Hwy 299 now closed.


Original post:

A fast growing blaze has blown up two miles west of Weaverville. The first report came at 4:25 today. Cal Fire says the burn (known as the Oregon Fire) is already 40 acres. CHP dispatch reports that a boat may have come off its trailer sending up a spark that started the incident. The dispatch also says that evacuation notice is going out to some residents in the area.

According to CHP, eastbound 299 is being closed at the Oregon Summit.

Smoke seen from the main street of Weaverville. [Photo provided by a reader.]


Willow Creek Air Quality at Unhealthy Levels

Kym Kemp / Sunday, Aug. 24 @ 4:32 p.m. /  News

As smoke pours into many areas of Humboldt from the Happy and the July Complex, air quality is suffering. Willow Creek has just moved into the Unhealthy category. People in that community are being advised to stay indoors.

North Coast Unified Air Quality Management District press release:

Smoke levels in the [Willow Creek area has] been classified as Unhealthy and are creating a health hazard. Smoke is being generated by the fires of the Happy and July Complexes. Current weather forecasts a short lived shift in northwesterly winds by this evening. Northeasterly winds are anticipated to return tomorrow.

Smoke Levels continue to be monitored. Please watch for updates. People are recommended to restrict outdoor activity.Symptoms that may be related to excess smoke exposure include: 

• Repeated coughing 

• Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing

• Wheezing 

• Chest tightness or pain

• Palpitations 

• Nausea or unusual fatigue

• Lightheadedness

If you have any of the symptoms listed above, contact your health care provider. Please see the NCUAQMD’s General Public Service Announcement for recommendations on limiting smoke exposure.

For 24-hour Air Quality Advisory Information, call the NCUAQMD’s hotline toll-free at 1-866-BURN-DAY (1-866-287-6329), or visit the website at www.ncuaqmd.org.

Homesteading Humboldt: A Gift From the Sea

Kym Kemp / Sunday, Aug. 24 @ 3:44 p.m. /  Food

Want to learn how to make stuff? build stuff? grow stuff? The Lost Coast Outpost will occasionally be bringing you guest posts from experts in their fields that will give you a bit of information on living sustainably and cultivating old-fashioned skills in a modern way.

Today’s post in our Homesteading Humboldt series is written by Dottie Simmons. She and her husband, Dennis, are the creators of one of our local businesses, Simmon’s Natural Body CareTheir Facebook page is here. Simmons is a Humboldt County Master Food Preserver (MFP) and a trained volunteer through the University of California Cooperative Extension (UCCE.) 


From Sea to Pantry

Part of keeping a well-stocked pantry is having some protein packed away. Dry beans and peas fill some of that need, frozen meats another, but there is nothing like having some canned Albacore tuna!

Now is the time of year fresh/frozen Albacore tuna is available direct from the fishing boats moored at Woodley Island. Canning your own tuna is a job worth the effort. Home canned Albacore is delicious and you can have variety you can’t find any other way.

First and foremost, Tuna MUST be canned in a pressure canner (NOT pressure cooker) with a gauge. Low acid foods such as meat, fish, green beans and other vegetables, can harbor botulism bacteria, which are killed by the high heat (240°) generated by steam under pressure. Luckily, this is easy and safe to do in your kitchen.

Tuna tips:

You can buy tuna whole or loined (filleted). It costs a bit more to get it loined. The price you pay is for the whole fish BEFORE it is loined, but we have always found home canning tuna to be cost effective. We bought $60 worth of loins last week and got 16-8 ounce jars coming out to $3.75 each – not including the tuna we grilled for dinner!

Pros for buying the tuna filleted: It’s not easy to loin a tuna if you are not accustomed to doing it, and can add a considerable amount of time to the process. You have none of the bones, tail, etc. to deal with.

Cons: If you want the extra parts: head; tail; bones; dark red meat, as cat food or fertilizer or?, you lose them when you buy it pre-loined.

To slice or loin it yourself, it is easiest when the fish is still partially frozen.

Put ¼ cup white vinegar in the water of the canner to help with clean up and cut the smell. This makes it SO much easier.

I mark a sheet of paper with the desired length for each type of jar and place it under a clear cutting mat. This makes it easy to get the right length every time.

Cutting mat to help slice the right portion.


Can tuna raw or cooked in ½ pints or pint jars.

Raw pack: cut the loins crosswise into jar size pieces and pack into clean, hot jars leaving a 1” head space.

Hot pack: bake or grill whole tuna until done (165° to 175° internally). Chill, then remove skin, bones, dark flesh, etc. cut into quarters (loins) and then into jar length pieces. Personally, I prefer raw pack, but we have friends that say grilling it first gives it great flavor.

Now you can get creative, adding anything from boiling water to Cajun seasoning to add variety. We like tamari soy sauce, lemon infused olive oil, or diced jalapeno pepper, but the possibilities are endless. We like the lemon tuna in with salads, the tamari with vegetables. For liquids, add 1 tablespoon per ½ pint, 2 tablespoons to pint jars. Put no more than ½ teaspoon salt per ½ pint, 1 teaspoon per pint.

Remember to leave a 1 inch headspace, remove any air bubbles and wipe the jar rim before adding the 2-piece lid.

½ pints or pints are both processed 1 hour and 40 minutes (100 minutes) at 10 pounds pressure (11 pounds if you are over 1000 ft elevation, 12 lb. over 2000’ or 13 lb. from 4000’ to 6000’).

And whatever you do, save some to eat fresh. Albacore is a gift from the sea!

Questions about food preservation? Interested in a demo?

Questions about the Master Food Preserver Program?

Contact the Humboldt County Cooperative Extension Office at:

5630 S. Broadway, Eureka, CA 95503, Phone: 707) 444-9334, or online at: http://cehumboldt.ucdavis.edu

Previous Homesteading Humboldt posts:


Family Seeking Kidney Donor for Fortuna Woman

Kym Kemp / Sunday, Aug. 24 @ 3:21 p.m. /  Humboldt

Jayne Peters 

Fortuna resident, Jayne Johnson Peters was 9 years old when she began to get sick. She was eleven when her kidneys failed. “She is one of the youngest children to have double kidney failure without any family history of the problem,” explained her sister Jessica Peters. At 12, Jayne had surgery to implant a kidney from her mother. Now, at age 27, the donated kidney is failing. (On average, a donated kidney only lasts 10-12 years.) She needs a new one. Her family is hoping someone in this community can be a match.

Right now, Jayne has to have frequent medical interventions. Three times a week hemodialysis is done at a medical clinic in Eureka. It is a 6 hour process, said Jayne’s sister. Four hours must be spent on the system. “[Technicians] remove her blood with one tube and then pump it back in with another, Jessica explained. “She has a double port in her heart—an intake and an outtake.”  There the blood goes through a filtration system.

This process is very difficult, said Saryn Kennedy, a niece of the two sisters who recently went with her aunt to the center. “It was so horrible to watch her whole body turn white.”

Jayne must also do peritoneal dialysis several times a week. “She is doing home dialysis as well,” Jessica said. “It takes 12 hours. That is a port that goes into her stomach. It pumps in a saline solution. She has a drain port into her stomach to drain it out.” 

A new kidney would allow Jayne to continue her studies in health nutrition. However, no one in Jayne’s immediate family can donate. “I can’t be a donor because I have a certain type of Auto Immune Disorder that disqualifies me,” Jessica ran through the list. “Mother already gave one. Father’s protein count [is] too high. Saryn [has the] wrong blood type.”

The family is hoping someone will help. “She is blood type 0-,” niece Saryn Kennedy said eagerly. “Any type of O blood can be a match.” 

The process isn’t easy for a would-be donor. However, according to a webpage offered by the Mayo Clinic,Research has shown that there’s little long-term risk for kidney donation, provided you’re carefully screened before becoming a donor.”

Collage of Jayne Peters photos compiled by her sister, Jessica Peters. The child is one of her nephews.

There are organizations that will help pay travel expenses and [help donors] get a medical leave,” Saryn Kennedy explained. Anyone wishing to explore the possibility of donating or with at any questions regarding procedures should contact the California Pacific Medical Center at (415) 600-1700 in regards to the Jayne Johnson/Peters account.

In addition, an account has been set up at Umqua Bank to help raise money. The Jayne Peters Kidney Fund’s account number is 993088707. Anyone wishing to donate may either send a check or deposit money directly at any Umqua bank.

A raffle and auction are also planned as future fundraisers.

Old Grower’s Home’ and More Short Plays This Weekend

Kym Kemp / Sunday, Aug. 24 @ 7:49 a.m. /  Humboldt

Press Release:

Come on out the the Garberville Theater this weekend and enjoy four comedic scripts that deal with Bigfoot seekers, Count Dracula in Alderpoint, an Old Growers Home, and a “Meditation Smackdown”.  The scripts were written by Owl Ceraulo and Jacob Shafer and you are guaranteed a true so Hum. theater experience full of laughter and poking fun.  Plus—live music by the so Hum Girls Band and the Fabulous Resinaires. 

WHEN:  Thurs, Fri. Sat at 8:00, Sunday the 31st matinee at 2

WHERE:  The Garberville (movie) Theater

WHO:  The primary actors are Susan Alexander, Lianna Babauta, Owl Ceraulo, Marilyn Foote, Carl Hanson, Joe Hiney, Moss Nipkau, Agnes Patak, Anna Rogers, and Jacob Shafer.   

When Does Your Kid Start School?

Kym Kemp / Saturday, Aug. 23 @ 5:49 p.m. /  Humboldt

Though most schools in Humboldt will be starting classes on Monday, August 25, many schools will be starting on other dates.

LoCO has put together a list sorted by date then arranged within the date by alphabetical order. [Also, see back-to-school safety tips below.]

Click here for each Humboldt County school district’s calendar this year.

Aug. 25:

Big Lagoon Union Elementary School District,

Blue Lake Union Elementary School District, 

Bridgeville Elementary School District,

Cutten Elementary School District, 

Eureka City Schools,

Ferndale Unified School District, 

Fieldbrook Elementary School District, 

Fortuna Elementary School District, 

Fortuna Union High School District,

Glen Paul and Community Schools,

Hydesville Elementary School District, 

Loleta Union Elementary School District, 

Maple Creek Elementary School District, 

Mattole Unified School District,

Northern Humboldt High School District, 

Orick Elementary School District, 

Pacific Union School District,

Peninsula Union School District, 

Rio Dell School District.

Scotia Union School District, 

South Bay Union School District.

Aug. 26: 

Freshwater Elementary School District,

Garfield Elementary School District,

Kneeland Elementary School District, 

Aug. 27: 

Jacoby Creek Charter School District

Union Street Charter

Sept. 2: 

Cuddeback Elementary School District,

Green Point School District, 

McKinleyville Union School District, 

Pacific View Charter School

Southern Humboldt Unified School District,

Trinidad Union School District K-8

Sept. 8:

Arcata School District, 

Sept. 10:

Klamath-Trinity Joint Unified School District, 

Safety Tips:

Eureka Police Department’s press release:

Eureka City Schools is back in session next Monday, August 25th. The Eureka Police Department would like to remind drivers to be aware of students walking and biking to school and to be more careful around congested school zones. 

Drivers should plan their route ahead of time and leave early in case of heavy traffic. Follow school drop off zone rules and exercise caution in these areas. Motorists traveling in either direction must stop for school busses with flashing red lights. 

Children are the least predictable pedestrians and are difficult to see. Follow the rules of the road and help us make this school year safe for all. 

Check out these safety tips below from the National Safety Council.


*Updated with more information 10:25 p.m. on 8/23.

Home Invasion in Mendocino County

Kym Kemp / Friday, Aug. 22 @ 9:31 p.m. /  Crime

Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office Press Release:

On 08-21-2014 at 6:01 AM, Deputies and Detectives with the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office responded to a residence in the 9100 block of Colony Drive in Redwood Valley, California for a report of a home invasion robbery.

Upon their arrival, Detectives learned that at least two men had entered into the residence through an unlocked bedroom door, at approximately 5:20 AM.

The suspects were dressed in all dark clothing and had their faces concealed. The suspects located the female victim [age 60] inside the bedroom and struck her on the head with a pistol multiple times, causing an injury.

The suspects then bound the female victim’s hands and legs while demanding money and marijuana.  The female victim struggled and screamed, which got the attention of the male victim who was sleeping in another room.

The male victim [age 62]made his way towards the bedroom where he encountered the two male suspects.

One suspect ordered the male victim to the floor at gunpoint and demanded money and marijuana.

The suspects bound the male victim’s hands and legs and left him facedown in a closet.

The two suspects ransacked the residence, taking US currency, a shotgun, and an oval opal ring with 3 small diamonds, which was forcibly removed from the female victim’s finger during the incident.

Additional property was stolen from the residence, but later recovered along a roadway in the Redwood Valley area.

After the two suspects left the residence, the female victim was able to call 9-1-1 for law enforcement assistance.

The female victim was transported to a local hospital where she received treatment for a minor head injury.

Mendocino County Sheriff’s Detectives did not locate anything at the scene that would indicate the victims were involved in a large scale marijuana growing operation.

Anyone who observed a suspicious vehicle or person(s) in the Redwood Valley area on 08-21-2014 between 3:00 AM and 6:00 PM or anyone who observed a vehicle traveling in the Redwood Valley area throwing items from a moving vehicle between 6:00 AM and 6:30 AM are urged to call the Sheriff’s Office tip line at 707-234-2100.

Sheriff’s Detectives are continuing investigations into the incident.