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NEVADA CITY, Calif. July 23, 2020 – Yesterday afternoon, thunderstorm activity once again intensified in northern California along the Sierra crest and the northern portion of the state. 1,507 lightning strikes were detected as shown on the 24-hour map.
Eleven active fires have been discovered on the Modoc National Forest so far, with three growing to appreciable size. The Caldwell Fire in the Lava Beds National Monument is reported at 12,000 acres, the Allen Fire at 800 acres and firefighters contained the Canyon Fire at 234 acres.
Lightning patrols are underway on all National Forests, with firefighters suppressing numerous small starts.
On the Tahoe National Forest, 26 strikes were recorded during a 3-hour period between 2:00 and 5:00 pm – 15 on the Sierraville Ranger District and 11 on the Truckee Ranger District.
Further south, fire crews are continuing to aggressively work on suppressing the Iris Fire, located west of Iris Meadows Campground and the Rock Creek Road on the Inyo National Forest. The fire is currently 170 acres and 20% contained. Investigators have determined that the fire is lightning-caused. It is burning in a mixture of sagebrush, mahogany, and mixed conifer.
An upper level low will keep temperatures slightly below normal today and Friday, with a warm up expected into the weekend. Afternoon and evening thunderstorms will be possible over the Sierra Nevada mainly south of Lake Tahoe through the weekend. Onshore winds will bring gusty winds at times, as well as good humidity recovery to the marine influenced/Delta areas. Near to slightly above average temperatures and dry weather expected next week.
Updates on the California fires can be found in the Fire News section.