Storm comes with unique set of concerns in foothills

Wednesday, March 14, 2018
Storm comes with unique set of concerns in foothills
Some areas around Mariposa saw thunder, hail and more than an inch of rain.

MARIPOSA, Calif. (KFSN) -- The blackened hills rising above Mariposa are more than an eyesore. They are a reminder of the Detwiler Fire and the dangers it still presents, even now in the winter.

"We do need the water and the mountains need the snow, but I do worry about the people that had their burn areas water came down pretty hard," said resident Ty McDermott.

Volatile weather hung above Mariposa all day.

Even after flash flood warnings were called off, the rain never stopped.

The McDermott shared what they experienced, "We heard the thunder coming in and then all of a sudden the downpour happened it was like cats and dogs," said Ty. "Then it stopped and then 15 minutes later it came down again, with hail," said Terry McDermott.

Forecasts warned a line of thunderstorms moving over burn scars could result in rock or mudslides. It's a possibility families from Cathey's Valley to Mount Bullion always keep in mind. Both communities were hit hard by last summer's wildfires.

"Right around this hill, my father's market it was starting to come down the hill and I was worried what if it rains and causes a mudslide behind the store," said resident Chase Dubberke.

For the most part this winter, the hills have been stable.

The Mariposa County Public Works Department says unseasonably warm temperatures earlier this year helped vegetation to grow and stopped erosion.

"People don't like the rain, they don't like driving in it. All I care about is the environment. If we don't get the rain, we are going to get more wildfires," said Dubberke.

Even though the rain brings danger now, families say in the long run, it's what will restore their community back to normal.