Basin Complex

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Basin Complex

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Approximate Location

36.21 latitude, -121.739 longitude

Incident Overview

Picture of fire fighters along highway 1

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The Basin Complex Fire, which started on June 21, was declared 100% contained as of 6:00 p.m. on Sunday, July 27, after having burned 162,818 acres.

All voluntary evacuations and road closures have been lifted by the Monterey County Sheriff's Department. Residents and visitors traveling through the area should continue to use caution though, as fire equipment and personnel may still be in the area.

With the exception of Kirk Creek, Plaskett Creek and Arroyo Seco Campgrounds, which will re-open on Friday, August 1, all National Forest lands within the Monterey Ranger District of the Los Padres National Forest, including roads and trails, will remain closed to public access until further notice. Several picnic areas on the Big Sur coast along Highway 1 including Pfeiffer Beach, Mill Creek, Sand Dollar Beach, Jade Cove Beach, Willow Creek and San Carpoforo Beach are currently open. Overnight camping is not permitted at these picnic sites. The use of wood campfires and charcoal barbecues is prohibited at any of the above mentioned campgrounds, picnic sites and throughout the entire Los Padres National Forest. Only portable stoves and lanterns using gas, jellied petroleum or pressurized liquid fuel are currently permitted.

Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park re-opened for camping on July 25. Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park, Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park and Andrew Molera State Park were closed during various phases of the Basin Complex Fire. Refunds for campers who had reserved campsites in Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park Campground have been authorized until July 24, 2008. While there are still significant areas of these parks that are closed because of fire damage, the majority of the visitor serving facilities were untouched by the fire. Valley View Trail in Pfeiffer Big Sur on the east side of Highway One and the trails on the west side of Highway 1 are open to the public as well as The Big Sur Lodge, the campground and the swimming holes within the campground.

Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park has re-opened the small parking area and the Waterfall Trail from the parking area to the overlook. All other park facilities east of Highway-1 will remain closed. "Ninety percent of our visitation to this park is due to this trail and the beauty it provides with the view of the waterfall and the Pacific Ocean," said Mat Fuzie, District Superintendent of California State Parks Monterey District. Park facilities west of Highway-1 in Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park are open.

Andrew Molera State Park has served as the Fire Camp and Incident Command Post for the Basin Complex Fire and is still serving in that capacity but to a much smaller extent.

The Basin Complex Fire has impacted habitat for many wild animals. However, these animals are adapted to living in this fire prone ecosystem. Most are able to move out of the way of approaching fire, finding shelter in caves, underground, and in moist areas. A small number may be injured and should be reported to the Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) for rescue and rehabilitation, or (831) 373-2631 or 422-4721 ext. 269

Management of the East Basin Complex has been transitioned from California Interagency Incident Management Team Number 3, to a locally based Type-3 management organization.

For up-to-date tourist information for the area, visit the Big Sur Chamber of Commerce website at or Monterey County Convention & Visitors Bureau website at

Basic Information

Current as of
Incident TypeWildfire
Date of OriginSaturday June 21st, 2008 approx. 12:56 PM

Current Situation

Size162,818 Acres
Percent of Perimeter Contained100%
Estimated Containment DateSunday July 27th, 2008 approx. 06:00 PM



Management of the East Basin Complex has transitioned from California Interagency Incident Command Team Three, to a local Type-3 command organization.

Unit Information

USFS Shield
Los Padres National Forest
U.S. Forest Service
6750 Navigator Way
Suite 150
Goleta, CA 93117

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National Wildfire Coordinating Group U.S. Forest Service Bureau of Land Managemen Bureau of Indian Affairs Fish and Wildlife Service National Park Service National Association of State Foresters U.S. Fire Administration
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