Photographs from the Photography on the Run post: Pt. Mugu State Park Debris Flows and Flash Floods
NWS Los Angeles/Oxnard Flash Flood Warning posted on Twitter with radar image from 1:35 am showing a line of strong thunderstorms approaching Pt. Mugu. Movement is from left to right.
Tweet from NWS Los Angeles/Oxnard at 2:16 am showing heavy rain over the Springs Fire burn area with rain rates up to 2" per hour.
Tweet from NWS Los Angeles/Oxnard at 2:43 am with photo of large mud and debris flows affecting homes below Conejo Mountain on the northwest border of the Springs Fire burn area.
2013 Springs Fire burn area and GPS track of run/hike on December 14, 2014, before Pt. Mugu State Park was closed. A notice on the Park web site says it will be closed "until at least January 12, 2015."
The Blue Canyon catchment is a huge west-facing bowl on the west side of the Boney Mountain massif. The orange line is the perimeter of the 2013 Springs Fire. The yellow line is my GPS track.
Erosion in a very small drainage near the Satwiwa windmill. This image and the following photos were taken on Sunday, December 14, 2014.
Debris flow from a ravine above Danielson Road.
Same debris flow on Danielson Road and erosion of the road. Some gullying of the road occurred earlier this year during storms at the end of February.
View down Danielson Road near its junction with the Upper Sycamore Trail. Flow in the streambed is from left to right. Note the incision pattern of the flow from the road into the streambed.
View downstream from Danielson Road at Upper Sycamore Canyon. The debris is an indicator of the width and depth of the flow here.
View down to Blue Canyon (on left) from the top of the western escarpment of Boney Mountain. Blue Canyon is a tributary of Sycamore Canyon.
Boney Mountain's western escarpment from the Backbone/Chamberlain Trail in Pt. Mugu State Park. The reddish rock in the previous photo can be seen on the upper right skyline.
Stream course in upper Blue Canyon from the Old Boney Trail. Boney Mountain escarpment is in the background. Scouring along the banks is indicative of the depth of the flow.
Overview of the stream course in upper Blue Canyon.
Flow across the Blue Canyon Trail from a tributary ravine. Debris is indicative of the speed and depth of the flow.
Slope failure and mud flow across the Blue Canyon Trail.
View up the stream course in Blue Canyon.
View downstream in Blue Canyon from about the same point as the previous photo.
Flash flood debris at least six feet above the streambed in Blue Canyon. Normal stream course is to the left. (Cap on debris provides scale.) This canyon has been subject to many flash floods.
More flood debris along a remnant of trail in lower Blue Canyon.
Outflow from Blue Canyon at Sycamore Canyon near the Danielson Multi-Use Area.
Debris from Blue Canyon piled into a culvert at Sycamore Canyon near the Danielson Multi-Use Area.
Mud and debris in Sycamore Canyon. The main stream channel is beyond the debris.
Mud and debris on Sycamore Canyon Fire Road from a tributary ravine. This is north of the Danielson Multi-Use Area and the view is up the road.
Looking down Sycamore Canyon Fire Road at erosion from the same mud and debris flow as in the previous image.
Mud and debris flows occurred on virtually all gullies, ravines and canyons on the east side of Sycamore Canyon Fire Road above the Danielson Multi-Use Area.
Bridge on Sycamore Canyon Fire Road at its junction with the Upper Sycamore Trail before the climb up to Satwiwa.
View up canyon of washed out section of the Upper Sycamore Trail.
View from the Upper Sycamore Trail down the stream channel. This is just upstream of the bridge on Sycamore Canyon Fire Road.
View upstream of flash flood debris in upper Sycamore Canyon along the Upper Sycamore Trail.
View up the Upper Sycamore Trail of outflow from rocky chute on the south side of the canyon. Note the runner descending the scoured area at the base of the chute.
Very small catchments generated surprisingly strong flows. This is the mouth of a small ravine on the east side of upper Sycamore Canyon along the Upper Sycamore Trail.
Many heavy rain events in California are associated with "atmospheric rivers." This image shows an ERSL/PSD Automated Atmospheric River Detection methodology applied to GFS analysis for Thursday, December 11, 2014 at 4:00 pm.
And this is the Core Integrated Water Vapor Content for that analysis.
And the GFS Modeled Water Vapor Transport.
But the AR is easily seen in this CIMSS morphed composite of SSMI/SSMIS/TMI-derived Total Precipitable Water and corresponds well with the ESRL/PSD Automated Atmospheric River Detection image shown earlier.
And this is the CIMSS morphed composite of SSMI/SSMIS/TMI-derived Total Precipitable Water for Friday, December 12 at 2:00 am.
A warm Pacific likely contributed to the moisture available to the system and the strength of the front. NOAA/NESDID Pacific SST Anomalies for 12/11/2014. Note unusually warm water off the California and Baja coasts.
4km RAMSDIS GOES-15 Water Vapor image for Friday morning, 12/12/2014, at 2:00 am as the flash flood event was evolving.
4km RAMSDIS GOES-15 Infrared image for Friday morning, 12/12/2014, at 2:00 am as the flash flood event was evolving.
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