The Rim Fire burned 400 square miles mostly in Tuolumne County from the middle of August to the end of September.
Fallen trees, barren ground, and damaged roads made the prospect of cleanup uncertain with winter on the way.
Pam Baltimore of the U.S. Forest Service says the drought has actually been a help because recovery crews haven't been hampered by normal winter weather.
"They had just a couple of days, the first part of December, that they were not able to get in but the snow went away quickly and they've been able to get in and out as they need to," says Baltimore.
Baltimore says crews are installing culverts to aid runoff and they're clearing debris.
The Rim Fire was the third largest fire in California's history and Baltimore says even short term recovery could take two to five years.
Using this new approach to calculate the snow’s water content also means improved forecasts for farms and cities, and even positive benefits for renewable-energy production. The program soon could go statewide — if it gets funded.
(AP) — Monday's snow survey found a "much rosier" picture than before last week's heavy winter storm, but still less than half the usual snow for this point in the season.
A judge ordered the California Department of Food and Agriculture to stop spraying dozens of pesticides. Some environmental groups count this as a win but a UC Riverside researcher warns the move will hurt efforts to fight a damaging citrus disease.
About 9 in 10 of the produce tested for pesticides at California grocery stores, farmer's markets and other outlets had little or no residue, according to the state Department of Pesticide Regulation's 2016 survey.
Gov. Brown attended the first UN Climate Conference held since President Donald Trump said he will withdraw from the Paris Climate Accord.