Wineries affected by Point Fire

Guests enjoying an afternoon of wine tasting at Capo Creek Winery on West Dry Creek Road were forced to flee after the wind-driven Point Fire broke out Sunday afternoon in the heart from one of Sonoma County’s most iconic wine regions.

Mary Roy, owner of Capo Creek Winery, said she started smelling smoke and receiving fire notifications on the Watch Duty app.

Roy was hosting about nine customers for a wine pairing at his 48-acre property, located between Mountain View Ranch Road and Stang Road, when sheriff’s deputies drove by with sirens wailing.

The winery’s owner told her customers it was time to leave, noting that the winery’s guests were from out of town and that some of them had arrived by Uber.

“I was trying to stay pretty calm,” Roy said in a phone call from Petaluma where she evacuated shortly before 6 p.m. with her dog. “I told them, ‘You need to call the driver now.’ I tried to be firm but not to scare them.

After Roy sent his employees home, she also left and watched the fire progress for a while from Dry Creek Road, knowing it was getting dangerously close to her property.

“The winds are so violent. The way he whipped and spread. I would have liked to see more planes, but I’m not a firefighter. I know they are doing their best,” she said, adding that she was not taking any risks. “If you live in Dry Creek Valley, get out of there immediately because you may get stuck there.”

About three miles closer to Healdsburg along the narrow, winding two-lane road, Dry Creek Vineyard sits on the edge of the evacuation zone on Lambert Bridge Road.

Tim Bell, the winemaking director, said shortly after 6:30 p.m. the winery’s maintenance crew was watering the perimeter of the property and keeping an eye on the situation until an evacuation order came, if that is the case.

Although their current position is to simply watch and wait, Bell said “the safety of the winery employees is paramount” and this is a very anxious time for everyone.

A fire that is growing

The Point Fire was first reported around 12:30 a.m. Sunday on Stewarts Point-Skaggs Springs Road near Marina Road. Dozens of vineyards and vineyards dot the rural landscape of Dry Creek Valley, just south of the fire.

The evacuation orders, the first issued at 3:02 p.m., covered rural homes and wineries northwest of Healdsburg, along West Dry Creek Road, north of Stang Road.

The fire grew quickly in the afternoon heat and gusts exceeding 30 mph. By 4:30 p.m., some fire crews had moved to defend threatened structures along West Dry Creek Road, a winding north-south road parallel to Dry Creek Road, which serves many wineries in the Dry Creek Valley .

By 6:30 p.m., the fire had consumed 550 acres as it raced down Bradford Mountain. As of 10 p.m., the size of the fire exceeded 1,000 acres, with containment of 15 percent, according to Cal Fire.

As of Sunday evening, more than 400 people had been evacuated and 4,000 were under evacuation warning.

This is a developing story. Check back for more updates.

You can reach editor Jennifer Graue at 707-521-5262 or jennifer.graue@pressdemocrat.com. On X (Twitter) @JenInOz.

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