Fire east of Lone Pine

lpfirelonglpfire3Sunday morning, fire broke out somewhere near the Lone Pine dump and spread north and south, whipped by extremely high winds.  Lone Pine Fire Chief Leroy Kritz said that eight agencies responded.  At 6pm Sunday, the fire had calmed way down and crews were being released.

Fire Chief Kritz said he and others are not sure exactly how the fire started.  He did say it apparently started “by the dump.”  Chief Kritz said the blazes ran from Highway 136 in the south to Depot or Narrow Gauge Road in the north.  Much of the fire burned in the Lower Owens River bed where a lot of fuels had accumulated.  The fire burned quickly through a lot of brush east of the community of Lone Pine.

Chief Kritz said that responding to the fire Sunday morning and throughout the day were volunteer fire departments from Lone Pine, Olancha, Independence, Big Pine, Bishop, and Wheeler-Crest.  Also on the fire were Cal Fire crews and the Forest Service.  The fast moving nature of the fire and the high wind created major concern for an out of control blaze, but around 5pm or so the fire started to lay down and crews were released.

Fire approached Hwy 136.  Photo by Dennis Mattinson.

Fire approached Hwy 136. Photo by Dennis Mattinson.

Bishop Fire Chief Ray Seguine said that volunteers from Independence, Big Pine and others took a strong stand at Highway 136 and the fire did not jump the highway as feared.
Chief Kritz said that Cal Fire is officially in charge of this incident and planned to send five engines and five hand crews from Southern California to stay on this Lone Pine fire.

According to Cal Fire, the Inyo Sheriff was also on scene as was BLM and LADWP. Cal Fire also reported that the fire burned on both sides of the river and threatened power lines in the area. They estimated that as of Sunday morning 75 acres had burned and that 80 personnel were on the fire.




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21 Responses to Fire east of Lone Pine

  1. Alice Chan March 2, 2013 at 9:35 am #

    Bennett, any word on the cause of the fire?

    • Benett Kessler March 2, 2013 at 9:51 am #

      Cal Fire has only said it was “human caused” but it’s still under investigation.

  2. Mammoth resident March 2, 2013 at 8:20 am #

    @ Jeremiah’s stance – I was referring to the CURRENT residents of Inyo County, you inbasul. And the statement wasn’t directed to all residents of Inyo County. It was directed towards the people that obviously have some issues thinking.
    Why would Mammoth Lakes Fire Department travel 95 miles to help with a fire that the agencies of Inyo County are more than capable of handeling? Thats redundent.

    • Benett Kessler March 2, 2013 at 9:54 am #

      It’s imbecile. And, this is the end of this thread. The fire departments arrange for what they need for any given fire. Let them handle it.
      Benett Kessler

    • Big AL March 2, 2013 at 7:56 pm #

      Mr .. just saying … they would travel that distance if called for a fire like that. resources for fires come from all around the state at times, and from other states sometimes.

  3. Big AL March 1, 2013 at 4:02 pm #

    WOW … never ceases to amaze me … it all starts with one spark .. no pun intended .. well yeah it was.

    When the call goes out on a situation such as this .. they call for resources from around the area. This incident if I recall .. was on a very windy day.

    All agencies contribute resources according to what they can commit. With the possible scenario at this fire, the possibility of it blowing up, out of their control. The need for additional resources is to be called in ASAP contingent on the fire getting bigger.

    So MLFD rolls a crew to help … travel time to the incident is somewhat lengthy. So .. by the time they get there, they might be right online to relieve another crew who has been working the line … or fill a spot needed at that time. The crew could just be a tanker truck or it could be a pumper.

    What maybe is misunderstood, is that the cost of responding usually is paid for by the BLM or CALFIRE, so it is not at a cost to the local departments contributing resources.

    Furthermore, local departments and agencies contributing resources, do not commit more of their resources than what is needed, and will not jeopardize their own districts needs to provide coverage. If in the case that they were in need of additional resources in such a time, then neighboring departments will help out.

  4. Jeremiah's stance March 1, 2013 at 3:41 pm #

    Mammoth resident you crack me up, so would you be a part of the inyo county small minds since you grew up in LP or did the small mind sickness leave you when you left the county?
    “Small minds think alike” and your response reflects those in that caliber.

  5. Mammoth resident March 1, 2013 at 1:21 pm #

    I live in Mammoth! and I am damn proud of it!!! I grew up in LP and I must say, I definatly prefer Mammoth over LP any day.
    The MLFD does a great job at keeping everyone safe! Did any of you ignorant people ever stop to think that maybe MLFD is busy taking care of their own town? No? Of coarse not. No surprise coming from people in Inyo County. Small minds think alike

    • Benett Kessler March 1, 2013 at 3:29 pm #

      Come on, people, let’s even out. There are no bad guys in this situation.

      • unsolved mystery March 1, 2013 at 4:21 pm #

        Benett, after 30-some years in the area, certainly you must be aware of the long-term animosity that exists from areas north of Mammoth Lakes and communities south of Mammoth Lakes towards Mammoth Lakes per se.
        You can read it in the posts as well as the comments you get from those on the streets of those communities. For some unexplained reasons, those who call Mammoth their home are not viewed in the best of light from those mentioned.
        Why this is only those from the north and south would know.

        • Benett Kessler March 1, 2013 at 4:53 pm #

          I am well aware of long-held territorial animosities. This is not a news flash.

  6. KimB February 27, 2013 at 10:14 am #

    Why do the think its hatered towards Mammoth folk? Have you ever thought with Bishop, Big PIne, Indepence Fire depts all down in Lp helping dont you think its a good idea to at least keep one fire dept in that area incase something happens!! Just saying!! Good Job to all depts invovled.

  7. BobK February 25, 2013 at 3:41 pm #

    Hatred! Where was the “Hatred” Dislike maybe….But Hatred.

  8. What the ... February 25, 2013 at 11:02 am #

    “See Mammoth”.
    Take that Mammoth.
    We don’t like you Mammoth …

    Such childish nonsense.
    Why the hatred?
    What purpose does this sort of rhetoric serve?

  9. Perplexing situation February 25, 2013 at 7:41 am #

    I wonder there is so much hatred (from some) directed towards people living in Mammoth?
    Why such bitterness towards an entire group?

    • Mark March 2, 2013 at 8:10 am #

      Hey Brah, The problem with Mammoth’s social mentality is it’s more along the lines of a Southern California beach community, with all the lying, stealing, lack of morals, and lack of ethics that comes with it. It’s a town with a high ratio of people who really can’t afford to live there.

      I find people in the surrounding area of much stronger character then found in the Brah land of Mammoth Lakes.

      Mammoth does not represent the true flavor of the Eastern Sierra.

  10. Wayne Deja February 25, 2013 at 7:24 am #

    Hopefully,this isn’t the work of an arsonist. Last summer,we had two fires set just off Lakeview Ave. in the field…one in dense brush behind the Trinity Church,and the second one on the other side of the road in between some homes in a gully.

  11. Trouble February 24, 2013 at 8:24 pm #

    See Mammoth, volunteers do a great job and they care.


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