This was going to be my last trip to Loon Lake this year and I was so looking forward to kayaking, fishing and beach combing while the lake was down. I love the boulders and granite formations that become exposed once the water recedes. Meanwhile the King Fire had started near Pollack Pines but I figured it was far enough away to not affect me. Well, not really. Even though the lake air was clear, they had closed the main campground. However, I found I could go to the other side of the lake where the North Loon campground was located and it was open. It was good enough for the evening but I was concerned about getting my kayak down to the lake. It was a pretty good distance encumbered by boulders of all sizes. And once I got it down, imagine the struggle getting it back up. Also around 2pm the wind had shifted and the air became rather polluted with smoke.
Well the next day I strapped on my wheels to the kayak and slowly but surely made my way down. I marked the route so I could use it going back up. The morning was gorgeous and the dogs and I went for a kayak ride. Ben swims alongside while Biggs rides in the bow. The idea is to give them plenty of exercise so that when I leave them in the RV the next morning while I fish they will be more relaxed.
The next morning I woke up to a gorgeous sunrise, the likes I had never seen before. It happened at exactly 6:30 a.m. and only lasted a few minutes. Luckily I got some great photos of it. I kayaked over to the south shore, where the regular campground is, and then west shore, then back. Trolling all the way. I only caught one trout, a bit disappointing, but I had caught two the other morning from the shore. Now on this day, Wednesday, the afternoon was clear, although I could see the billowing smoke in the west. I planned on staying till Friday. However, around 4ish the only other camper on the lake came over and told me that Wentworth Springs road was closed and they were closing Icehouse road to incoming traffic due to the fire. Stumpy Meadows reservoir had been overtaken by the fire, which is on my normal route home. The smoke clouds were exceptionally massive and scary looking so I figured if I had to evacuate quickly, getting that kayak up from the lake would really slow me down. So I got right on that task. Actually, dragging it up was slow going but not too bad. The wheels on the kayak worked great, especially having them strapped on really tight, but this time gravity was not my friend. Once I got the kayak up I figured I just better leave all together. Then on my way driving out on Icehouse I met up with a couple fire fighters who were on their way to evacuate any campers on Loon Lake (stupid enough to still be there), and I was the only one, so I would have gotten shagged anyway. I didn’t get home till after sundown but was glad to be safe at home with my sweet Kate.
Subsequently I put up an interactive map of the fire here. Check it out.