Mandatory Evacuation

After car camping for 3 days, sleeping in a bed was wonderful. It was perfect nights sleep. Took Zarty on a walk to get coffee in the morning. He has his own mind what going for a walk means and he was in no hurry. 

Later in the morning Eric drove us from Bishop to Horseshoe Meadow where we will be camping for 2 days before starting the JMT NOBO. We set up in the walk-in camp area and chatted a bit with some fellow campers before we set off to complete an acclimatizing day hike. Was felling good so opted to hold off on taking Diamox.  During the hike we heard a rather loud and somewhat confusing explosion sound. We looked around, except behind us, and didn’t see anything out of the ordinary. While stopping for a brief rest, Eric and Zarty come bolting down from Cottonwood Lakes. He hastily remarked he was getting off the mountain. We both followed his pointing finger and saw alarming smoke filling the mountain side. 

Instead of continuing on we opted to return to camp. We made it the equestrian camp area and were stopped by Sherriff Vaughn of the Inyo Sheriff’s department. He told us there was a mandatory evacuation of all camps and trailheads including where we were staying. As we did not have rides off the mountain, Sheriff Vaughn allowed us to stay until more was known and if needed he would take us down.   

The fire steadily crew closer into camp (within 1-2 miles) and then suddenly turned. By the time we retreated to our tents, it looked the best it did all afternoon thanks to quick response of air and ground wildfire fighters.  We were told if anything changed they would get us and asked us to sleep close to the parking lot. 

So my tent is set up between the bathroom and garbage cans just feet from the parking lot. Do I fear bears wandering so close to my tent or a wildfire more?  


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