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Largest Fire in California History Burns Over 1,200 Structures, Still Only 37% Contained

The Dixie fire in California is still growing. Here are some dramatic videos and pictures.
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Dixie Fire

Smoke Bot

The Dixie Fire started July 13. 

Greenville California

Greenville California

Image from Falcons Fullback Keith Smith's Aunt and Uncle Cope with Dixie Fire Loss.

August 22: Cooler Weather Slows Spread of Dixie Fire on the West

This morning, a bit of welcome news Cooler Weather Slows Spread of Dixie Fire on the West.

Firefighters on the Dixie Fire got help Sunday morning from the weather, as cooler temperatures and increased humidity helped slow the blaze's spread on the western edge.

From Saturday into Sunday morning, the fire grew just under 5,000 acres, much less than the previous day, when the blaze grew 12,000 acres, according to fire managers.

The 721,298-acre blaze was 37% contained as of Sunday, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection. There have been 1,247 structures destroyed and another 90 damaged, according to the latest tally.

Dixie Fire Origin and Name 

  • The Dixie Fire is an active wildfire in Butte, Plumas, Lassen, and Tehama Counties, California. It is named after the road where it started. The fire began in the Feather River Canyon near Cresta Dam on July 13, 2021 and had burned 721,298 acres (291,899 ha) by August 22, with 37 percent containment. 
  • Since July, the fire has burned primarily north through the Lake Almanor area into Lassen Volcanic National Park and east toward Indian Valley and the outskirts of Quincy. The fire has damaged or destroyed several small towns, including Greenville on August 4 and Canyondam on August 5.
  • By July 23, it had become the largest wildfire of the 2021 California fire season; by August 6 it had grown to become the largest single (i.e. non-complex) wildfire in the state's history, and the second largest overall (after the August Complex fire of 2020).
  • Smoke from the Dixie Fire caused unhealthy air quality across the Western United States, including Utah and Colorado.

Details from Wikipedia.

Bootleg Fire in Oregon 

Bootleg Fire

The Bootleg Fire in Oregon is 98% contained. 

This New York Times article is from July 19, updated yesterday. The Bootleg Fire Is Generating Its Own Weather.

The Bootleg Fire in Southern Oregon, spurred by months of drought and last month’s blistering heat wave, is the largest wildfire so far this year in the United States, having already burned more than 340,000 acres, or 530 square miles, of forest and grasslands.

“The fire is so large and generating so much energy and extreme heat that it’s changing the weather,” said Marcus Kauffman, a spokesman for the state forestry department. “Normally the weather predicts what the fire will do. In this case, the fire is predicting what the weather will do.”

Fires so extreme that they generate their own weather confound firefighting efforts. The intensity and extreme heat can force wind to go around them, create clouds and sometimes even generate so-called fire tornadoes — swirling vortexes of heat, smoke and high wind.

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Caldor Fire August 20 Update

Grizzly Flats

The Sacramento Bee reports 46-mile stretch of Highway 50 closed between Placerville, South Lake Tahoe

Caltrans officials on Friday afternoon closed Highway 50 in both directions in El Dorado County, essentially cutting off the main route between Sacramento and South Lake Tahoe, as high winds were expected to stoke the Caldor Fire.

Mandatory evacuations remained in place for Pollock Pines, Sly Park, much of Camino, Kyburz and nearby areas.

Caldor Fire August 22 Update

Caldor Fire Map August 22

The image is from California Caldor Fire Briefing Map

The anecdotes in blue are mine, The fire is progressing towards the town of Kyburz. 

Caldor Fire jumps Highway 50 near Kyburz, August 21 Update

ABC News reports Caldor Fire jumps Highway 50 near Kyburz, new mandatory evacuation orders 

Caltrans closed Highway 50 between Sly Park Road and the town of Meyers citing safety concerns due to the Caldor Fire. There is no estimated time for how long the freeway will remain close.

The Caldor Fire arrived during a normally busy time for tourism in El Dorado County. Instead of tourists, fire crews from across the state are working hard and discouraging travel in the area. 

“Many of our wineries are evacuated or at least in the evacuation zone at this point,” Kara Sather, spokesperson with the El Dorado Winery Association, said. “It's just not in anyone's safety or best interest to venture into our region right now.”

Camp Richardson Resort & Marina in South Lake Tahoe will temporarily close for about two weeks due to the threat of the Caldor Fire.

“All those campers kind of doing last-minute camping before school starts and all that were evacuated, it doesn’t look like the [El Dorado] National Forest is going to open until September 30 so that’s going to have an impact,” Jody Franklin, a spokesperson with the El Dorado County Chamber of Commerce, said. 

The Caldor Fire started on Saturday, Aug. 14, two miles east of Omo Ranch and four miles south of the community of Grizzly Flats in El Dorado County. On its first day, it only grew 45 acres, but since then, it has burned thousands of acres of land. In Saturday's active fire of interest report, it was reported the fire burned 90,107 acres, according to Cal Fire. There is still no current containment

Evacuation Map

Caldor Fire Evacuation Map

Anone in the area is advised to consult the Evacuation Map from the El Dorado County Sheriff.

Best wishes to all.

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