Gap Fire Maps

The first map is updated and compiled by Ray Ford, based on his daily reporting from the Gap Fire. The second map is a brilliant effort by Erika Bildsten based on public information. The last map is the most current we have, issued by Santa Barbara County.

Clicking on this link will take you to an animated map which shows the first five days of Gap Fire growth, July 1 -- 5.

The maps can be played with, showing three different views: Colored map, satellite picture, and terrain (topographical). Plus and minus buttons zoom you in and out, and clicking on colors and points reveals further information.

Google source map is *here* (by Ray Ford)

Erika says of her map, "This is my best approximation of the Gap Fire evacuation zones based on Santa Barbara County press releases. This is NOT an official document, nor does it necessarily reflect the minutia of the evacuation areas. This is only a rough visual guide.
"I have also included information kiosk sites, landmarks, shelters, and mask distribution sites."

Google source map is *here* (by Erika Bildsten)

Last update, July 9, 2008 (morning)


Independent Discussion Guidelines

Thank you so much Erika and Ray for providing us with these maps. Our County officials cannot get it together, and the so-called "emergency information sources" (e.g., KTMS, and other radio stations) seem to have gotten back to business as usual without proper coverage. So we depend on you to keep us informed and sincerely appreciate your efforts. There should be hell to pay somewhere in the County coffers!!!! Why can't they keep a constantly UPDATED (not 1-2 days old) map for us? Unbelievable.

One question for Erika: it appears that your map shows the fire crossing Old San Marcos Road on the eastern side, is this correct or am I reading it wrong? Thank you again.

CAVELA (anonymous profile)
July 7, 2008 at 8:25 a.m. (Suggest removal)

The county does have a map of the evacuation areas, last updated Sunday evening, 7:30. Here's the link:

mtndriver (anonymous profile)
July 7, 2008 at 8:40 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Sorry, mistake, that county map I just linked is from Saturday night, not Sunday, not accurate.

mtndriver (anonymous profile)
July 7, 2008 at 8:42 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Even though the official maps all show the fire perimeter well west of Old San Marcos Road, I live on the east side, first ranch as you go up, and Thursday night we had a spot fire on our property that burned approximately 1/2 - 1 acre. Luckily it was noticed almost immediately and was given ultra-high priority. It got put out very quickly, which probably saved many properties! Thank you, firefighters, and thanks to the Independent for keeping on top of the story day after day!!

amyt (anonymous profile)
July 7, 2008 at 9 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Someone in the city or county needs to meet with Erika and get some instruction on how to modernize the information delivery system!

newbee (anonymous profile)
July 8, 2008 at 2:48 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Without Erika ( a brilliant TEEN) and Ray Ford and his colleagues at the Indy, we would be hopelessly at a loss for good info. Kudos to all of you - with a bucketful of thanks for a job tremendously well done! We in the community are so very grateful!

Something in the county needs to change - in a big way. When the power is out and I lose my link to I have no good source of information. And that has been quite often...

Yes, the radio stations seem to have gone back to "business as usual" as another poster wrote and the KEYT coverage has been lousy throughout. Why can't they get a map that is current???? Erika, you do need to go work for them for these first few weeks before school resumes and teach them how this is done!! At an enormous hourly rate, I might add. Skills like yours are priceless!!

With a grateful heart,
Ela Z

elaz (anonymous profile)
July 9, 2008 at 10:44 a.m. (Suggest removal)

If you have a cell phone, you can keep up with our Fire updates by text messages (so if the power goes out you've got a connection): Check out this page here for direct information and sign-up:

If you can get Text Messages, you can get this service, free.

For a good introduction and more links, here's the article we wrote on this new service:


webadmin (webadmin)
July 9, 2008 at 11:04 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Reply to Cavela re: "One question for Erika: it appears that your map shows the fire crossing Old San Marcos Road on the eastern side, is this correct or am I reading it wrong? "
I believe you are reading it wrong. The only area on her map that crosses OSMR is the mustard colored area that also crosses 154 and Painted Cave Rd. Click on this area and a popup will explain this is an evac warning area. The fire area is the purple region (bluish where overlays the green LPNF area, and taupe where overlays the LPNF and evac warning areas).

sbhobo (anonymous profile)
July 10, 2008 at 11:32 p.m. (Suggest removal)

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