California’s world-famous wine country is bracing for more dangerous wildfire weather conditions Thursday while its communities reel from the Glass fire’s already devastating damage.
The Glass fire in Napa and Sonoma counties has ravaged more than 56,781 acres so far and remains just 5% contained. More than 240 structures have been completely destroyed ― including homes, schools and wineries ― and another 140 have sustained damages.
Cal Fire Battalion Chief Mark Brunton said in an update Thursday morning he was “cautiously optimistic” that fire control lines would stop the blaze from moving into some communities, but dangerous weather conditions ― high heat, strong winds and low humidity ― mean the “spread of fire is almost imminent.”
That fire-friendly weather is expected to pick up Thursday afternoon and last for a day and a half.
“It’s going to be a big firefight for us for the next 36 hours,” Brunton said, noting Cal Fire had several firefighting squads in from out of state and the National Guard there to help.
Some of the region’s beloved landmarks that employ huge swaths of the community are among the devastation, including St. Helena’s Meadowood resort and Calistoga’s Castello di Amorosa winery. One of the worst-hit residential areas is Deer Park, a community nestled in the northeast hills of St. Helena.
The air throughout Napa Valley remains choked with smoke, inflicting dangerous air quality on people near the blazes and far into other parts of Northern California.
See photos below of the devastation the Glass fire has already inflicted.
- Justin Sullivan via Getty Images St Helena’s Glass Mountain Inn burns Sunday night.
- Justin Sullivan via Getty Images Damaged wine barrels sit stacked at Calistoga’s Fairwinds Estate Winery on Tuesday.
- Justin Sullivan via Getty Images Grapevines at St. Helena’s Chateau Boswell Winery burn on Sunday.
- SAMUEL CORUM via Getty Images A swimming pool is the only thing left at a burned Napa Valley home on Monday.
- Justin Sullivan via Getty Images The main building at St. Helena’s famous Meadowood Napa Valley luxury resort crumbles from the flames on Monday.
- Justin Sullivan via Getty Images St. Helena’s Chateau Boswell Winery is seen engulfed in flames Monday.
- SAMUEL CORUM via Getty Images The charred remains of cars are lined up outside a home in Napa Valley on Monday.
- SAMUEL CORUM via Getty Images People watch the Glass fire from the side of the road and the flames make their way down the hill near Calistoga on Monday.
- SAMUEL CORUM via Getty Images This is all that’s left of the one of the buildings at Foothills Elementary School in Napa Valley on Monday.
- Kent Nishimura via Getty Images People watch the Glass fire burn a hillside near St. Helena’s Beckstoffer Vineyards on Monday.
- SAMUEL CORUM via Getty Images Firefighters scrape a fire line with hand tools in Napa Valley on Monday in an attempt to contain the blaze.
- SAMUEL CORUM via Getty Images A destroyed vehicle sits outside a Calistoga home on Wednesday.
- Kent Nishimura via Getty Images The Glass fire is seen along CA-128 on Wednesday.
- Justin Sullivan via Getty Images St. Helena’s Foothills Adventist Elementary School is left with little standing besides a statue of Jesus Christ.
- SAMUEL CORUM via Getty Images The charred remains of guest houses seen Wednesday at Calistoga Ranch.
- SAMUEL CORUM via Getty Images The farm house at Napa Valley’s Castello di Amorosa winery is seen gutted by the Glass fire on Tuesday.
- Kent Nishimura via Getty Images A look inside the devastation at Castello di Amorosa’s farm house on Tuesday.
- Kent Nishimura via Getty Images Smoke lingers over Lake Hennessey in Napa County on Wednesday.