Brush fire threatened housing at Point Reyes Lighthouse

09/30/2020

A fire burned five acres of thick coastal scrub near the Point Reyes Lighthouse on Sunday, threatening a park service apartment but contained by an air tanker and winds blowing out to the ocean. The park service has not named an official cause, but Pacific Gas & Electric lines were down in the area. Multiple callers reported a column of smoke around 10:30 a.m., and fire engines responded from Point Reyes Station, Inverness and the scene of the Woodward Fire, 10 miles southeast. With flames just 200 yards away from a park building, firefighters requested air support from Cal Fire. A helicopter and a tanker arrived, dousing the slope in pink retardant and stopping the fire’s growth around 1 p.m. Crews mopped up for the next couple of days. Small fires like this one are a regular occurrence in the seashore. In May, a quarter-acre burned on the Vision Fire Road after a bishop pine knocked down a power line. In June 2019, two acres burned off of Mount Vision Road for the same reason. The anomaly is the Woodward Fire, which has engulfed 4,929 acres of wilderness south of Limantour Road; the fire was sparked by lightning in a hard-to-reach area and quickly burned through the thick forest. Twelve people remain committed to the blaze, which is burning stumps and logs in the interior. Thin plumes of smoke still rise into the sky, but nothing compared  with the haze created by the Glass Fire, which has burned over 42,000 acres in Napa and Sonoma Counties since Sunday. Four firefighters from Stinson Beach and Bolinas drove an engine to the Glass Fire on Monday for a 24-hour shift of structure protection. After a few weeks of blue skies, air quality is once again a factor in the lives of West Marin residents.