About the Brigade


Over 40 Years of Fire Protection – Rescue – Emergency Medical Services


The Mission of the Big Sur Volunteer Fire Brigade is to provide dependable fire protection and emergency services for Big Sur with teamwork, respect and integrity


Big Sur International Marathon: Update – April 26, 2017:  The 32nd annual presentation of the Big Sur International Marathon is on Sunday April 30, 2017.  Due to the nature of the event, traffic will be impacted along Highway 1 from Rio Road in Carmel, south to the Big Sur village on April 30th.  Click HERE  for more information on traffic impacts due to the marathon.  


Summary from the Big Sur Pfeiffer Bridge Unified Command Team: Update – April 18, 2017:  Click HERE for the latest summary from the Unified Command Team.



First section of the Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge removed by CALTRANS on March 18, 2017.

First section of the Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge removed by CALTRANS on March 18, 2017.

HIGHWAY 1 CLOSED:  Update – March 20, 2017 – Due to recent movement of the bridge support columns, Highway 1 is now closed indefinitely at the Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge which is just south of Sycamore Canyon Road. (About 1/2 mile south of the U.S. Forest Service Ranger Station)  in the Big Sur valley.  The bridge is currently being demolished by CALTRANS with a new bridge is not expected for at least six months. The overall closure of Highway 1 along the coast now extends from from the Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge south to Ragged Point near the San Luis Obispo County line.  Highway 1 is open and clear south from Carmel to Sycamore Canyon Road. There are numerous landslides and rock falls along Highway 1 south of of Big Sur to the San Luis Obispo County line and through traffic is not possible.  It is undetermined at this time when any portions of Highway 1 in the affected area will reopen. If planning on traveling in this area, it is strongly advised to check the Road Conditions section of the CALTRANS website before you travel. For additional information on conditions in the Big Sur area as it becomes available, you can go to our Facebook Page by clicking on the Facebook logo in the upper left hand corner of this page.




Pfeiffer Canyon Bypass Trail progress on March 16, 2017.

Pfeiffer Canyon Bypass Trail progress on March 16, 2017.

Pfeiffer Canyon Bypass Trail: Update – March 30, 2017 – Since the Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge on Highway 1 in Big Sur is currently being demolished by CALTRANS to make way for a new bridge, a foot trail has been built that allows persons to at least walk between the north and sound sections of Pfeiffer Canyon.  However, the foot trail is only for use by local residents, school children, and service workers who are employed at businesses south of Pfeiffer Canyon.  The trail is not open to the public. State Parks Rangers will monitor the trail for unauthorized use. The trail construction was a join effort between California State Parks, the California Conservation Corps, the Big Sur Volunteer Fire Brigade, and community volunteers.  This cooperation has succeeded in constructing a trail in much less time than even thought possible. With construction of a new bridge scheduled to take at least six months, the walking path will at least allow persons the ability to get to either side of the canyon. 



For the latest road conditions in the Big Sur area, check the CALTRANS Road Conditions website.


Learn how to protect your home and property from landslides and debris flow at ready.gov


The latest Big Sur Volunteer Fire Brigade News! Read it here in the:  March 2017 Round Up Report


Learn what you can do to protect your home and property from Wildfire!


 Check out all the things to do in Big Sur in the 2016 – 2017 Big Sur Guide provided by the Big Sur Chamber of Commerce.



2016_575x200_loNational Fire Prevention Week was October 9 – 15, 2016.  First recognized in 1922 by then President Warren Harding, the 2016 Fire Prevention Week theme is  “Don’t Wait – Check the Date! Replace Smoke Alarms.”  According to the National Fire Protection Association, ”  Smoke alarms save lives. If there is a fire in your home, smoke spreads fast and you need smoke alarms to give you time to get out. Having a working smoke alarm cuts the chances of dying in a reported fire in half. Almost two-thirds of home fire deaths resulted from fires in homes with no smoke alarms or no working smoke alarms.”  For more information on smoke alarms and fire prevention practices, check out the websites of the National Fire Protection Association or the United States Fire Fire Administration.


Donations are Welcomed and Appreciated:help-support-the-big-sur-volunteer-fire-brigade

We understand completely how it can seem overwhelming with all the requests for donations from the many worthy organizations out there, especially during the holiday season. Well, the reality is that many non-profit organizations simply would not exist if it were not for the generous donations and support from people like yourselves. Indeed, we are one of those organizations. Since we receive no governmental funding, our existence, and our ability to serve the Big Sur community, and the numerous visitors, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year, comes primarily from very much appreciated private donations.  We are here to serve the Big Sur Community to the best of our ability and we need your help to do just that.  Please consider a donation in any amount to help us maintain a vital service to the Big Sur community and our visitors. Please click on the “DONATE NOW tab at the top of this page for ways to support the Big Sur Volunteer Fire Brigade. Click below to view our annual donation request letter from Fire Chief, Martha Karstens and thanks for your past and continued support of the Big Sur Volunteer Fire Brigade.

Donation Request Letter, November 2016



About the Fire Brigade:

The Big Sur Volunteer Fire Brigade was formed in 1974 to provide structure fire protection for the residents and businesses in the Big Sur area. The  Brigade now provides both structure and wildland fire protection, along with rescue and emergency medical response for the Big Sur Community and its over 4 million annual visitors.  The Brigade remains an all-volunteer company, with about 20 members, responding to an area which covers 60 miles of coastline along Highway One. 



How We Are Funded:dsc_7985

We are funded almost entirely by grants and donations from fundraising activities such as our Big Sur River Run, our annual BBQ and Firefighter’s Muster, the Big Sur Marathon, and the Nepenthe Halloween Bal Masque. We also send out a fundraising letter each year requesting support from our local residents. We welcome any and all donations as we are continually trying to upgrade our equipment and emergency response capabilities.

Contributions such as cash, appreciated stock, in-kind professional services, and used vehicles and equipment have in the past helped us build our capabilities for emergency response. If you would like to contact us about making a donation, our address is:

Big Sur Volunteer Fire Brigade

P.O. Box 520

Big Sur, CA. 93920

Phone:  831-667-2113

As a non-profit, Internal Revenue Code Section 501(c)(3) organization, tax-exempt number 94-2840361, and registered to solicit donations in the state of California, your donation will be gladly accepted. To make a tax deductible donation to the Big Sur Volunteer Fire Brigade by credit card or using Pay Pal, click on the “Support Us” tab above.



Local business where you can purchase Big Sur Volunteer Fire Brigade clothing and apparel:

Treebones Resort

Big Sur River Inn & Restaurant


News and updates from the Big Sur Community Emergency Response Team: (Big Sur CERT)

Big Sur Community Emergency Response Team


Information and local events in the Big Sur Community from the Big Sur Chamber of Commerce:

Big Sur Chamber of Commerce


Information and news from the Coast Property Owners Association (CPOA):

Coast Property Owners Association





Soberanes Fire: August 11,2016. Fire retardant base on the El Sur Ranch below Pico Blanco

Soberanes Fire: August 11,2016. Fire retardant base on the El Sur Ranch below Pico Blanco



Rock Slide Big Sur 2017

One of the many rock slides along Highway 1, February 2017