The headlines on the East coast newspapers read something like: ‘California Coast ON FIRE’ & ‘SoCal Burns!’ You can imagine the 1.2 million phone calls this generated as opposite coast families call in a panic.
California is a big ass state. If you were in Malibu and drove to the city of San Diego – it’s about 150 miles. That’s a trip from Boston, MA to Bridgeport, CT. Orange County (where 1 major fire is burning) is only 200 square miles smaller then the state of Rhode Island. San Diego County (where several major fires are burning) is 20% smaller then Connecticut. San Bernardino County (I-15 fires and still in ‘So-Cal’) is as large as the states of New Hampshire and Vermont combined. That’s 20,000 square miles, or 12,800,000 acres. The so cal fires are roughly 200,000 acres burned so-far. Yes, that is a lot – but the whole coast is far from ‘ON FIRE!’
Contrary to this argument is the above picture that we took from the I-5 heading down into San Diego on Tuesday night. They shut the highway down shortly after to start a back-burn. Camp Pendleton is just miles of wild desert brush. Because no homes, property, or military personnel were in danger they just let this fire burn itself out. Here it certainly looked as if the coast was on fire. Three miles of it anyway.