It's now ashes.
California was hit with hot, dry, and gusty weather. The state's current wildfire, which is the largest in California, raged through the Gold Rush-era Sierra Nevada town of around 1,000. It decimated much of downtown, including wooden buildings older than 100 years.
Gorman was not able to receive the good news that the winds would calm down and change direction as they headed into the weekend.
It's absolutely devastating. Gorman said, "We've lost my home, my business and our entire downtown area are gone." Gorman was one of the many who obeyed evacuation warnings. She and her husband fled town a week-and-a-half ago when the Dixie Fire approached.
While she managed to get some photos of her favourite jewelry and important documents, she couldn't help thinking about the family treasures that were left behind.
"My grandmother's dining table chairs, my great-aunt’s bed from Italy. My son was 2 years old when I remember this photo. She said, "He's 37 now." "At first, you think, "It's OK, it has the negatives." Then you realize, "Oh. It's not. No.
Officials hadn't yet determined the extent of the damage, but Plumas County Sheriff Todd Johns said that more than 100 homes were destroyed in the area.
Johns, a Greenville resident for over 30 years, said that "my heart is broken by what has happened there."
Officials said that 100 homes and other buildings were set on fire by the River Fire, which broke out Wednesday close to Colfax, a small town of approximately 2,000. It was about two hours south. According to state fire officials, there was no containment. About 6,000 people were evacuated in Nevada and Placer counties.
The Dixie Fire, which lasted three weeks, was one of 100 large, active fires that were burning in 14 states. Most of them are in the West, where there has been a lot of drought in recent years.
The Dixie Fire had burned approximately 565 square miles (1.464 square kilometers), which is more than Los Angeles. The cause was under investigation, but Pacific Gas & Electric has said it may have been sparked when a tree fell on one of the utility's power lines.
On Wednesday and Thursday, the blaze erupted through timber, grass, and brush. One fire official said it was "basically near combustion." Hundreds of homes were already destroyed by the flames before they made new runs.
Although no deaths or injuries were reported, the fire continued to threaten over 10,000 homes.
On Thursday firefighters were unable to shift firefighters to hot spots due to the storms and smoke clouds caused by the fire's strong winds.
It's creating havoc. Capt. Sergio Arellano, a fire spokesman.
Chris Carlton, Plumas National Forest supervisor, stated that "we're seeing truly terrifying fire behavior." "We are truly in uncharted territory."
Wildfires in the American West are now more difficult to combat due to heat waves and droughts that have been linked to climate change. Climate change, according to scientists, has caused the region to become warmer and dryer over the past 30 year. This will make it more difficult for wildfires to be controlled and more destructive.
Greenville was hit from two directions. Firefighters were already there trying to save the town, but they first had to put their lives on the line to rescue those who refused to evacuate. They had to load people into cars to get out.
Jake Cagle, chief of the incident management operations section, stated that firefighters are having guns pulled on them because people don’t want to evacuate.
Officials said that the flames also reached Chester, north of Greenville. However, crews were able to save homes and businesses, with minor damage to a few structures.
Paradise was also affected by the fire. The 2018 wildfire that was sparked from PG&E equipment and which killed 85 people made it the deadliest national wildfire in more than a century.