Rain, Mud and Despair

From drought to flood, from fire to mud, California bakes, burns and floats, always on the brink of calamity.

She tried to hold onto the door frame, but the force was overwhelming. He was thrown against a fence and pinned there, buried in mud up to his neck.

Central Coast Region

Act One:

Massive Landslide Isolates Big Sur

Rock Slides in Big Sur and Mudslides in Santa Barbara Block Pacific Coast Travel

Big Sur suffers another round of weather woes

More Big Sur Rock Slides

Rock slides from heavy rainfall have CLOSED #Hwy1 overnight south of Big Sur at Mile Marker 42 near Coast Gallery,” Stan Russell wrote late Monday on TheBigSurBlog. “Crews will assess damage & begin clean-up at dawn. Be safe out there!” 

 

What To Know Before A Pacific Coast Highway Road Trip…

Iconic Bixby Bridge in Big Sur

“The Bixby Bridge is just south of Carmel, meaning you’ll have to pull a U-turn after viewing. But it’s completely worth it. In our opinion, it’s one of the most pristinely beautiful and inspiring places on earth. Anywhere – literally, anywhere. Try to time your trip for early morning or late afternoon, while the sun is still out, giving yourself ample time to make it back onto main roads before dark.” 

Act Two:  

Drought, Wind and Fire

Rob Lowe Fights Wildfire, Feeds Firefighters

Rob Lowe Instagram

Rob’s home was spared even though it looked like the blaze was knocking at his front door early Sunday morning. The Thomas Fire‘s been raging for 2 weeks now and has made its way to Santa Barbara where Rob, Oprah, Ellen and Katy Perry’s folks have had to evacuate their homes. 

Act Three:

Rain, Mud and Boulders

Tracking a path of destruction from Montecito’s mountains to the ocean

San Ysidro Creek cut a path of destruction through the center of Montecito early Tuesday morning when intense rain released a deluge of debris from the Santa Ynez Mountains, which were burned by the Thomas fire. 

Family Members Frantically Search for Loved Ones Missing in Montecito Mudslide

Below, in blue, was scrawled “Augie & Karen Johnson,” with a question mark in front of their names. Below and next to it were other names, also with question marks, as people searched for loved ones. One name at the top had been crossed out, with “He is OK” scrawled next to it.  and ,

Mud, darkness and destruction turned Montecito into death trap

“But the rain was heavy enough that she woke up at 3 and watched it with her boyfriend, Norm Borgatello. They stepped out the front door to look, her family described later, and a cold sludge of gravel and mud and boulders picked them up. She tried to hold onto the door frame, but the force was overwhelming. He was thrown against a fence and pinned there, buried in mud up to his neck. She was swept away. “Josie!” he called out, over the roaring river. “Josie!”” 

Photos Of California Mudslides Show How Much Damage It’s Caused

“I came around the house and heard a deep rumbling, an ominous sound I knew was … boulders moving as the mud was rising,” resident Thomas Tighe told CBS SFBayArea. “I saw two other vehicles moving slowly sideways down the middle of the street in a river of mud.” 

After fire and mudslides, Montecito struggles; Ventura and Santa Barbara counties rebound

Montecito Inn – Huffington Post

The Montecito Inn has been evacuated and closed indefinitely. The Four Seasons Resort the Biltmore Santa Barbara, a 22-acre beachfront luxury hotel, is closed indefinitely amid substantial flood damage, a representative said. The San Ysidro Ranch resort, which shut for “an extensive cleaning” after the fire, remains closed indefinitely. Santa Barbara: Visit Santa Barbara spokeswoman Karna Hughes said most attractions are open, including the Santa Barbara Zoo, Old Mission Santa Barbara and the Santa Barbara Botanic Garden. – LA Times

The California deal: Accepting the calamity along with the splendor

“Yes, we have summer and at times a bit of winter, but the cycles in California follow a different calendar. From drought to flood, from fire to mud, California bakes, burns and floats, always on the brink of calamity. We are here by the millions in defiance of reason, lured to a bountiful garden that at times seems unfit for human habitation.” 

Rain, rain, don’t go away. It’s good for this old soul

“Out here, disasters often prey on hillside castles overlooking the sea. If that seems fair or just, try sweeping three feet of muck out of your child’s closet some time. There is nothing fair about any of this. Heartache is heartache. Precious photos are precious photos. No one owns the exclusive rights to hard luck. We can’t take a hint though. This has been going on for decades, and we rebuild in vulnerable areas, because they bring us nearer to nature and soothe our jangled souls. “It’s worth the risk,” we say. “Ever seen our sunsets?”” 

Train service to Santa Barbara restored; 101 Freeway open as far as Carpinteria

“For many travelers, Amtrak trains may be the best way to get from Los Angeles to Santa Barbara for the foreseeable future. Caltrans said late Friday that the 101 Freeway would not reopen Monday, as originally thought.” 

101 Freeway, overwhelmed by Montecito mudslide, to remain closed indefinitely

“U.S. Highway 101, a major north-south artery that carries 100,000 vehicles through the Central Coast each day, was initially expected to open Monday, but officials said cleaning up one part of the freeway was proving more difficult than imagined. In a section of the road near Olive Mill Road — one of the lowest points in the city — there was 2 feet of standing water and storm drains were clogged, Jones said. Once all the mud and debris is removed, the pavement and overpasses must be evaluated for structural safety, and then signs and guardrails reinstalled and lines repainted.” 

 

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