On Wednesday morning, the National Weather Service warned that thunderstorms were expected throughout Northern California, and boy were they right. A map released today shows that thousands of lightning strikes hit NorCal, mostly in northeastern corner of California.
The strikes were mostly concentrated in Modoc County, with some seen in Lassen and Shasta Counties, as well as east of Chico. There were also a string of strikes recorded in Siskiyou County just east of the Klamath National Forest.
“We had a trough of low pressure moving up and it grabbed that moisture that was left over from the tropical system, ” says Craig Shoemaker, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service office in Sacramento, to SFGate. “It was enough to get the thunderstorms going.”
The lightning started several small fires in NorCal, with a couple near the McCloud River and Shasta Lake, and more in Butte County near Forest Ranch east of Chico.
Two #Lightning strike fires kept firefighters busy near Forest Ranch today. Both involved lightning striking trees, one about 150 feet tall and 5 feet in diameter, the other a couple miles away spread to the vegetation, about a 200 by 200 foot spot. Crews are at scene mopping up. pic.twitter.com/Ez1Dvdfa2F— CAL FIRE Butte Unit/Butte County Fire Department (@CALFIRE_ButteCo) August 29, 2019
Thunderstorms remain in the forecast for Thursday and Friday this week.