Category Archives: Kernville

The devastation is horrific. Kernville and Tehachapi fires

I live in the south-end of the San Joaquin Valley. I am surrounded on three sides by magnificent mountain ranges. One of the most beautiful places I like to go, that is wonderfully close to my home is the mountains northeast of here, the Kern River Valley, which is the beginning of the Sequoia National Forest. The Kern River provides water to the fuckwits of Los Angeles, it’s that big Its stunning and so magnificent…and it will be again.

But it will take years for the area to come back after the ravaging fire that ran through that area the last few days, the fire is called “The Bull Fire”. Kernville is a small, very rural,friendly  town up there in the mountains, the welcoming area as it were, of the Sequoia National Forest. Some People lost their homes, their animals, basically everything. The damage to wildlife is unknown at this time…but surely it is huge. From Channel 29’s writeup and photo page:

KERNVILLE, Calif. — Evacuation orders were lifted Wednesday for residents of Riverkern and the Camp Owens juvenile probation facility as more than 1,100 firefighters battled the 16,000-acre “Bull Fire.”

Two people have been injured, eight homes have been destroyed and six outbuildings have burned, but crews appear to be making headway on the fire that has ravaged the Kern River Valley. The fire was 12 percent contained Wednesday night.

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger also declared a state of emergency for Kern County as another wildfire burns 10 miles south of Tehachapi.

The ‘West Fire” as the Tehachapi fire is known, is up in the mountains to the east of Bakersfield, and I have been through that awesome area hundreds of times, mostly on my way to Vegas and all points east. That fire started Tuesday, the day I did a 7 hour round trip drive to San Diego to have a ‘come to jesus‘ meeting with my father. It didn’t go well to say the least…but digress…When I came over ‘The Grapevine‘ a 4100 ft mountain I must cross to get home to Bakersfield, I saw the huge smoke plume and I got a shiver down my spine..I knew where it was and that it was a new fire. It has so far, been the most devastating, although both fires are devastating for different reasons.

The Windmill Farm, which I have photographed a hundred times, and provides natural energy to the thousands of residents of Mojave an surrounding areas is also threatened. If the fires reaches that area the devastation will be calculated in the billions of dollars folks.

A total of 17,000 acres have been burned total from both fires. Again, from Channel 29’s Tehachapi fire photo page:

Firefighters say they’ve partially surrounded a wildfire near Tehachapi that has burned at least 30 homes and is threatening about 150 others.
The blaze 10 miles south of the city in the Old West Ranch community is one of two in Kern County that have forced about 2,300 people to evacuate homes.

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger declared a state of emergency Tuesday night in Kern County as a result of the “Bull Fire” in the Kernville area and the “West Fire” near Tehachapi.

I am sad today, so much of natures beauty has been destroyed.  The Tehachapi fire happened in mid-day,while people were at work, and they lost their pets, horses and homes…everything. As an animal lover this devastated me. You can see both these fires from space they are so huge. A few photos below, courtesy of the victims that live in both areas.

Drawing water from the Kern River

Kernville Fire Above

Tehachapi fire above
Trying to save the windmill farm in Tehachapi Pass

Both fires are still burning folks…and its breaking my heart.