Moonshine Ink Newspaper’s ‘On Fire’ Covers Wildfires Through ‘Spectrum of Lenses’

Updates on the latest fires in the region, as well as wildfire preparation, firefighting methods and other angles on the fire crisis.

PUBLISHED SEP 3, 2021 12:00 A.M.
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Truckee's 'Moonshine Ink' newspaper offers a unique package of fire coverage.

Truckee's 'Moonshine Ink' newspaper offers a unique package of fire coverage.   U.S. Department of Agriculture / Wikimedia Commons   Public Domain

After nearly eight weeks, the Dixie Fire continues to burn Butte, Plumas and three other counties, while at the same time,  the Caldor Fire — which ignited on August 14, exactly one month after the Dixie Fire — has scorched almost 213,000 acres as it approaches South Lake Tahoe. Mandatory evacuation orders remain in place throughout the region, even as firefighters make some incremental progress bringing the two infernos under control.

About 30 percent of the country’s active firefighters are now involved in battling those blazes, according to Moonshine Ink. The independent print and online newspaper based in Truckee provides regular updates on those massive fires, as well as other blaze in the region — and has been doing so since 2019 — in a special section appropriately titled “On Fire.” 

The paper’s ongoing project “delves into the issue of wildfire through a spectrum of lenses, including public education, breakdown of the science, graphic depictions, unique personalities, and more." 

In one recent entry, reporter Alex Hoeft attempts to define what the “the end of Caldor and Dixie” would entail. The Calfor Fire, now listed as 29 percent contained by Cal Fire, is projected to be fully contained by September 8. But, Hoeft notes, “the date is just a filler.”

“Terrain, fuel type, fuel moisture, and weather are major factors considered in the determination of a hopeful containment date, and a panel of experts monitor the situation—weather, forestry, and firefighting pros work together on the incident command team for each wildfire,” Hoeft writes.

The “On Fire” package has also covered such topics as “The Many Dimensions of Fire Hardening,” what to do when an evacuation order hits, and what Cal Fire officials see as the worrying “normalization” of “how bad things have become,” with increasingly massive fires ripping through northern California year after year.

Access the Moonshine Ink “On Fire” reporting at this link

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