Complexities of Indirect Firefighting – NW California Fires, 9/14/2023

In mid-August, 2023, lightning ignited many fires across NW California. Several became large, but most have stayed fairly small by modern standards. Rain knocked most of these fires down over the first few days of September, but even before then, the majority of the fire effects on these fires were low-moderate severity and ecologically beneficial.

Firefighters on these fires have been applying fire to the landscape around these fires, though conditions have been too wet in many cases for their fires to spread very far. We’ll take a quick tour of current fire behavior, look at forecast weather, and talk about more about the complexities of using fire in firefighting. We’ll also take a look at the Anvil Fire, near Port Orford, Oregon.

The livestreams have chapters, and you can scroll along the YouTube timeline to see the specific fire you are interested in. If this is hard to do in this page, click on the ‘YouTube’ link in bottom right of the video to see the video in YouTube, and you can navigate the chapter links in the description.

Thanks always to everyone who participates in the Livestreams. We’ll answer questions if we can.

Hop here to all of the 2023 Wildfire Videos.

The Lookout is an independent media company reporting on wildfire, forestry, land management, and rural culture. We are driven by a desire to help people understand how wildfires work, the strategies employed by people attempting to manage them, and the intersection of fire and culture. We are based in Chico, in Northern California. We are 100% user-supported. If you enjoy our content, check out and consider becoming a subscriber.
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Cover photo by Will Harling