PLUMAS COUNTY (CBS13) — California's largest wildfire so far this year continues to burn through Butte, Plumas and Lassen counties. The Dixie Fire merged with the Fly Fire overnight on Saturday and forced more people out of their homes, and burned parts of tiny towns to the ground.
The Dixie Fire has scorched hundreds of thousands of acres, already. Video shows crackling flames shooting into the sky and towering over trees. The windy, dry and hot conditions continue to fuel the flames in the remote area.
"It looks like a horror film to be honest," said Jake Edwards.
He was given a warning to evacuate earlier in the week and took the opportunity. He still hasn't been given the official order, but many of his neighbors have. The fire continues to move closer towards his Plumas County home.
Edwards, a photographer, continues to share photos and video of the scene on his Instagram, @scenescapery. He's captured bright orange skies, and an ashy Lake Almanor - calling the area "apocalyptic." Some photos reveal mainly wildlife left behind.
"It's been absolutely bizarre," he said. "With the smoke, you can't breathe. This really taken a toll on all of Plumas County."
The toll has especially been felt by the tiny towns of Paxton and Indian Falls. Craig Philpott, an independent reporter out covering the Northern California wildfires, said he watched as several homes burned to the ground.
"The fire further up in the hills was throwing embers into this little community," Philpott said.
He recalled seeing children's toys out in torched yards and believes everyone in the area had been able to fully evacuate. Charred remains of the homes were visible in the Sunday daylight.
Evacuation information can be found here. See photos of the Dixie Fire below.
Crews from across the state have teamed up to contain the Dixie Fire, including Sacramento Metro Fire. Captain Chris Vestal with the department said four members of their team are up in Butte County. They moved there from the Bootleg Fire in Oregon just days ago. The constant shift and movement put them to the test.
"Coming right on the back of each other – it does become an endurance game," said Vestal. "For the entire summer."
Vestal said fire seasons continue to get longer in California, a cause for concern. Both patience and perseverance are needed to battle the blaze, as people wait to learn if, and when, they have a home to return to.
More than 5,000 fire personnel are on staff for this fire. Because of the merge between the Dixie and Fly Fires, there will no longer be updates on the Fly Fire specifically. As of Sunday night, the Dixie Fire is 21% contained.
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