Structure Loss California 2023?

I’m only starting this topic to prod the thoughts of seasoned overhead and alert young FF’s of this year’s possible fire season.

The annual grasses crop is beyond exceptional, it has developed significant height along with coarse density. Not to mention all the areas not impacted by previous fire seasons/grazing that left plenty of matted areas to carry strong ERC’S that resist suppression. With conjunction with many areas where snowpack downed timber tops that have contributed to ladder fuels that have previously been treated along homes and roadways to prevent ember cast and torching.

Many of the homeowners/landlords responsible for the upkeep will not reach the desired fire resistant nature required or will attempt to burn materials out of prescription putting others at risk of losing their homes in the process (I’ve already instructed a few burning out of prescription to cease operations).

I believe we will have many structures lost in IA this year due to the INTENSITY of the burning conditions within the initial burn period, I believe the majority of fire season will be starts will be contained within the first 0-7 days. Anything prolonged beyond that I believe will be chaparral driven with wind events behind it (southern California).

I would encourage young FF’s to ignore the large amount of moisture received this year as a comfort and instead let it reflect an important warning as to the highly violent reaction fire has to light fuels.

I’d like input on this so please reply.


It seems as though in my unit, those in the rank of FF1 and above, are on their toes. Haven’t heard a single person at work thinking the moisture is a good thing or it will be easy haha. Only the fact that it delays the season in the timber. But a good reminder nonetheless. It seems as if the comfort due to the winter is shared by the general public for the most part and we’ve been seeing this firsthand with some pretty risky burn pile setups/attndance/timing. Alot of homeowners in the grass are realizing this and taking good steps in terms of fire season prep. However, that’s not necessarily the case in the timber. Where homeowners and cabin owners are trying to capitalize on the moisture we’ve recieved to mitigate their fuel issues, but that time is running out.


I think we will have a shorter season due to the heavy winter we experienced. I am thinking something similar to 2019 . Not a lot of large fed fires but a lot of fire in the lower elevations. LNU got busy Oct 2019.

This hits the nail on the head …
“the majority of fire season will be starts will be contained within the first 0-7 days. Anything prolonged beyond that I believe will be chaparral driven with wind events”


Acres burned last year was very comparible to 2019 in the grand scheme of things. Even with a very light winter and everything being dry all year, 2022 was pretty dang slow. I think it’ll depend on wind like you said but we could see things getting very spicy for lower elevations in all units. Add wind and lightning this summer and I think there will be trouble.

That Nob fire that burned was a NE aspect hill with melting snow on top of it. Not like it was a huge fire, but was still an extended incident and was called RROS. So we will see.