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The Dixie Fire Is Less Than A Third Contained

The Dixie Fire in Northern California continues to expand: It's now burning 780 square miles, amid high temperatures and dry conditions.

Containment remains at less than a third. It's the largest wildfire in California, having destroyed more than 500 homes and most of historic downtown Greenville.

The Dixie Fire spared the tiny town of Chester in Northern California. But the massive blaze dramatically transformed the landscape, and could affect it for years to come.

In Montana, several thousand people remain under evacuation orders in the state's southeast. That's where the Richard Spring Fire is threatening dozens of small communities, including the Northern Cheyenne Indian Reservation.

Large fires are burning in 14 states, mostly in the Western U.S.

This story originally ran on the Morning Edition live blog.

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Dave Mattingly is an NPR News anchor, responsible for seven newscasts daily on weekday mornings. Prior to anchoring NPR newscasts in 2014, Mattingly worked 19 years in NPR's newscast unit — primarily as a producer.