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Plumas County Sheriff Todd John consistently thanks the out-of-area law enforcement personnel, such as this unit from the San Francisco' Sheriff's Department, that have assisted with the Dixie Fire. Plumas County is no stranger to fire, but never has there been such a widespread event - one that Johns refers to as unprecedented. Photo courtesy of the San Francisco Sheriff's Department

July 29 a.m. update on the Dixie — crews working to hold the perimeter lines

Was hoping to see a little increase in containment this morning, July, 29, but it remains at 23 percent. Total acreage burned is 221,504. There are nearly 6,000 personnel assigned to the fire — 5,931. They are spread out across the roughly 82 miles of perimeter, much of it in rugged, difficult terrain.

West Zone

Fire activity was active during the evening with spotting and rollout. Fire behavior on the Dixie Fire is expected to increase due to drying conditions. Fire continues to move toward control lines, burning unburned interior islands and ridges.

Most expected growth will be to the west toward Butte Meadows. This is the area where Operations Section Chief Mike Wink anticipates several days of work to bolster containment lines and protect not only Butte Meadows, but Jonesville and Philbrook. 

Strong upper level ridging will bring warm and dry conditions to the area through Friday with well above normal temperatures and worsening overnight relative humidity recovery. Isolated thunderstorms today should stay well east of the fire area. Crews will continue to construct direct and indirect line to secure the fire perimeter, construct contingency lines in both zones, and provide structure defense in communities at risk.

East Zone

Smoke levels varied over the fire yesterday evening, with the smoke clearing through much of the East Zone but remaining persistent in some drainages and valleys. Hot and dry weather in the afternoon allowed for some firing operations along containment lines. Crews focused on strengthening and securing containment lines in the East Zone.

These containment lines include a line along the southern perimeter in the Bucks Lake region, the Mount Hough Road, Emigrant Road, and a northern direct line in the Long Valley and Round Valley Reservoir area. A spot fire began burning off the southeast perimeter, and firefighters quickly mobilized to address the new site. (The spot can be seen on the map below.)

Crews plan on strategically using firing operations and air support today when and where possible. They will continue strengthening containment lines with dozers and handlines when conditions are less favorable for firing and air operations. The forecasted hot and dry weather indicates an increase in fire activity, and firefighters will be on the lookout for spotting and other aggressive fire behavior.

 

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