Dixie Fire

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Duration:
6 minutes, 36 seconds

In 2021, the Dixie Fire raced through dense vegetation, dried by drought, until it had burned nearly a million acres. Effects of the fire within Lassen Volcanic National Park are generally more moderate than other areas of the fire. Weather, firefighting efforts, and past fuel reduction helped to slow the fire's progression through the park and resulted in more varied levels of burn severity. Forest management offers hope in the face of larger and more extreme wildfires fueled by climate change.

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Learn and Explore

The Dixie Fire started on July 13, 2021 in Feather River Canyon southeast of Lassen Volcanic National Park. The fire entered the southeast corner of the park near Juniper Lake on August 5, 2021 at which point Lassen Volcanic National Park entered into unified command with USFS and CAL FIRE to implement a full suppression strategy.

The Dixie Fire reached its final size of 73,240 acres within the park on September 30. On October 26, the Dixie Fire reached 100% containment with a total size of 963,309 acres making it the largest single fire in California history.

 
 
An illustration of a snow-covered volcano dome with green trees and lake at its base. A black foreground includes the shape of burned and unburned trees and contains the words "Lassen Resilience. Cascade Range. Lassen Volcanic National Park. Northern Ca."
Lassen Resilience screen print by Chico artist Jake Early.

Jake Early

Lassen Resilience Campaign

Lassen Association and Lassen Park Foundation, in partnership with Lassen Volcanic National Park, have created the Lassen Resilience campaign to showcase the park’s resilience and bolster recovery efforts following the 2021 Dixie Fire.

 

Dixie Fire Timeline

Dixie Fire (DF) | Lassen Volcanic National Park (LVNP)

Date

Event

7/13

DF started; cause under investigation

7/16

Lassen National Forest joins Cal Fire in Unified Command

7/23

DF becomes largest California wildfire in 2021.

7/24

Warner Valley and Juniper Lake areas closed and entire park closed to backcountry camping due to DF.

8/5

DF enters the southeast corner of LVNP near the Juniper Lake Area.
LVNP closes due to DF.
LVNP joins USFS and CAL FIRE in Unified Command.

8/6

DF becomes the largest single (non-complex) wildfire in California history.

8/16

Burn out operation in the Southwest Area to reduce south and eastward movement of the lightning-ignited fire on Morgan Summit.

8/17

The town of Mineral, including park headquarters, under evacuation order; park headquarters temporary relocated to Redding.

8/18

Some structure loss confirmed at Drakesbad Guest Ranch including 2 of 4 duplexes and outbuilding near the dining hall.

8/22

Loss of 7 of 8 Juniper Lake cabins confirmed, including 1 NPS-owned cabin.

8/22

Burn out operation in the Butte Lake and Badger Flat/Lost Creek areas to reduce north and eastward movement.

8/23

Evacuation warning for Mineral reduced to warning. Park staff begin restoration of some park operations in Mineral.

9/30

Final Dixie Fire footprint within the park measures 73,240 acres or approximately 8% of the entire Dixie Fire footprint.

10/4

Portions of the park unaffected by the Dixie Fire re-open. This includes two portions of the highway: 8 miles from the Southwest Entrance to Lassen Peak parking area and 1 mile from the Northwest Entrance to Loomis Plaza and 8 trails.

10/26

Dixie Fire reaches 100% containment at 963,309 acres including 73,240 acres within Lassen Volcanic National Park.

 

Full Suppression Strategy

The Dixie Fire was managed in two cooperative zones: West and East. Lassen Volcanic National Park is included in the West Zone. Lassen Volcanic National Park, in unified command with USFS and CAL FIRE, implemented a full suppression strategy. The park superintendent authorized all firefighting tactical requests that were been made by the Incident Management Team. This led to the use of numerous tools from the firefighting toolbox, including:

  • Retardant drops when necessary;

  • Air operations: to date, only helicopter bucket work has been possible due to smoke and wind, but fixed-wing aircraft, including “Super Scoopers” are also approved and assigned to fire to be used as conditions allow;

  • Bulldozers: dozer lines in the Lost Creek Campground area connect to dozer lines on USDA Forest Service lands, as well as at Butte Lake and at Juniper Lake;

  • Handline: firefighters have built handline connecting to the Park and Forest dozer lines, creating a buffer;

  • Heavy equipment is being used to improve existing roads and trails for firefighting;

  • Mastication along the portion of the park highway;

  • Chainsaw use in the Lassen Volcanic Wilderness;

  • Burnout operations to slow the spread of the fire; and

  • Fighting the fire with direct control lines on the fire's edge.

Park firefighters assigned to the incident included handcrews, a Branch Section Chief, Resource Advisors, and numerous other roles within the incident.

 

Dixie Fire News Releases

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    Last updated: May 16, 2022

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