Creek Fire on Camp Pendleton forces 7,000 to evacuate on Christmas Eve

The fire burned more than 4,200 acres west of Fallbrook, California

Creek Fire on Camp Pendelton Marine Base
Creek Fire on Camp Pendelton Marine Base, December 24, 2020. CAL FIRE image.

The Creek that started on the east side on Camp Pendleton in Southern California forced 7,000 people to evacuate on Christmas Eve. Pushed by north-northeast winds of 5 to 10 mph gusting at 15 to 25 mph the fire spread across the base burning more than 4,200 acres before firefighters were able to stop the spread Thursday evening.

The fire was reported on Camp Pendleton near the intersection of De Luz Road and Harris Trail shortly after 11 p.m. Wednesday. By 11 a.m. Thursday conditions had improved and the evacuation order was downgraded to a warning. Late in the afternoon showers helped firefighters slow the spread and at 5:30 Camp Pendleton announced that a fireline had been constructed around the blaze. The entirety of the fire was on the base.

map Creek Fire
Map showing the location where the Creek Fire started on Camp Pendleton. Map by Camp Pendleton.

There were no reports of any structures that burned. The 200 firefighters were assisted by four air tankers and three water-dropping helicopters.

During the first 14 hours the fire was burning, from 11 p.m. until 1 p.m., the relative humidity was 8 to 10 percent — very low for overnight conditions.

One of the aircraft used on the fire was a BAe-146 operated by Neptune Aviation. Two days before the fire started the company posted on Facebook saying the aircraft was on duty in Southern California during Christmas week, very late in the fire season.

Tanker 02

Air Tanker 02 Drops on the Creek Fire
Air Tanker 02 Drops on the Creek Fire on Camp Pendelton Marine Base, December 24, 2020. CAL FIRE image.

Fresno firefighters surrounded by fire at Camp Pendleton

Some firefighters from the Fresno Fire Department (California) had a little too much excitement while fighting fire at Camp Pendleton recently. As far as we know there were no injuries.

Update on San Diego County fires

San Diego County Fires May 18, 2014
San Diego County Fires at 11:45 p.m. PDT, May 18, 2014

(Originally published at 12:03 a.m. PDT, May 18, updated at 10:12 a.m. PDT, May 18, 2014)

Camp Pendleton Fires

The most recent fire to break out at Camp Pendleton has gone by three names, Combat Fire, Talega Fire, but the latest name is San Mateo Fire. It has burned 1,500 acres in the northwest corner of the base and is listed at 55 percent contained.

The Tomahawk Fire is listed at 6,500 acres with 93 percent containment. The Las Pulgas Fire has burned 15,000 acres and is 42 percent contained.

San Diego County reports that all evacuations have been lifted at Camp Pendleton.

Cocos Fire in San Marcos

The Cocos and Highway Fires are being managed as the San Diego Complex by a CAL FIRE Incident Management Team. CAL FIRE reports the Highway Fire is 100 percent contained at 380 acres, while the Cocos Fire has blackened 1,995 acres (it keeps shrinking), is 85 percent contained, and eight structures have burned.

Other fires in San Diego County

The Poinsettia and Bernardo Fires are 100 percent contained.

More photos taken from military helicopters are at Fire Aviation.