Scenes From the Dixie Fire
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Scenes From the Dixie Fire

Photojournalist Christian Monterrosa is on the ground documenting the second-largest wildfire in California’s history.

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The Dixie Fire has burned about 490,000 acres as of Monday, Aug. 9, and forced thousands from their homes since it started on July 13. It is the second largest wildfire in California history and is only 21% contained.

Entire towns have been reduced to rubble and ash as more than 5,800 firefighters continue to try to prevent further destruction.

Residents of the historic Gold Rush town of Greenville, now completely destroyed, had seen the wrath of wildfire before but never expected their town of 800 people to be demolished by it.

Some blame poor forest management, while others see it as further evidence of a climate emergency.

The nearby town of Quincy has been spared the fate of Greenville, and on Friday the smoke cleared to show blue skies. But the plume of the Dixie Fire in the background reminds everyone that they could be next.


All photographs by Christian Monterrosa.


A wildland firefighter drives an ATV past a burning forest during the Dixie Fire in the Plumas National Forest on Friday, Aug. 6.
As smoke blots out the sun, a wildland firefighter continues to work in the Plumas National Forest.
A speed limit sign destroyed by the Dixie Fire in Greenville, Calif.
Smoke from the Dixie Fire covers Lake Almanor in Plumas County, Calif.
Members of the National Guard erect a roadblock in Plumas County, where 40% of the population is under evacuation orders.
Burned cars and buildings beneath the heavy smoke in Greenville.
Several hundred structures in Greenville have been destroyed by the Dixie Fire.
A burned truck sits in a blanket of smoke.
In a fire this hot virtually everything becomes fuel.
In a steep, canyon-covered landscape, firefighters try to get the upper hand.
A deer crosses the street as the Dixie Fire burns.
The thick smoke has held down the wind and temperatures, but it also grounds aircraft fighting the Dixie Fire. 

All Photographs by Christian Monterrosa

Copyright Capital & Main 2021

Co-published by Sacramento News & Review

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