Photos: Otherworldly scenes unfold as Thomas fire burns into the night

La Conchita resident Laura Hinz, can't find her ride as the Thomas Fire approaches the town of La Conchita early Thursday morning. (Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)
La Conchita resident Laura Hinz, can't find her ride as the Thomas Fire approaches the town of La Conchita early Thursday morning. (Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)

Times photographers Marcus Yam, Wally Skalij and freelance photographer Michael Owen Baker spent three nights (and three days) covering the Thomas fire in Ventura County. The intensity of the fire illuminates the suburban landscape in ways that allow the photographers to show the eerie and terrifying time after sunset.

(Marcus Yam / Los Angeles Times)

A firefighter checks the interior of a home as crews conduct structure protection from a fire in Oak View.

(Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)

Edward Aguilar runs through flames from the Thomas fire to save his cats at his mobile home along Highway 33 in Casitas Springs.

(Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)

A firefighter runs to avoid the intense heat of a burning bush while fighting the Thomas fire in La Conchita.

(Marcus Yam / Los Angeles Times)

Firefighters work save a house in the Thomas fire in Ventura.

(Marcus Yam / Los Angeles Times)

A family packs up and evacuates as the Thomas fire moves closer to their home in Ventura.

(Michael Owen Baker / For The Times)

Sage McKinney watches the Thomas fire on Buena Vista Street in Ventura.

(Marcus Yam / Los Angeles Times)

Embers from the Thomas fire blow through a neighborhood north of Ventura.

(Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)

Residents of La Conchita watch the Thomas fire in the hills above town.

(Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)

A firefighter battles the Thomas fire in La Conchita.

(Marcus Yam / Los Angeles Times)

The Hawaiian Gardens apartment complex in Ventura burns in the Thomas fire.

(Marcus Yam / Los Angeles Times)

Fire crews monitor the the Thomas fire on both sides of Maricopa Highway as it burns vegetation outside of Ojai.

(Marcus Yam / Los Angeles Times)

John Bain and Brandon Baker take cover from the embers as they try to help stop a fire from burning a home in Ventura.

(Michael Owen Baker / For The Times)

Fire personnel keep an eye on the Thomas fire on Toland Road near Santa Paula.

(Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)

The Thomas fire reaches the 101 Freeway north of Ventura.

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