Over the weekend, the season’s largest wildfire in California broke out, sweeping across the Mojave Desert.

Conditions became dangerous as fire personnel experienced spinning columns of fire called fire whirls, according to the government wildfire tracking site InciWeb.

The wildfire has burned more than 77,000 acres since Friday, when the fire first started on private property near the New York Mountain Range of the desert, reported The New York Times.

California is the second state — after New Mexico — with the most acres burned this year, with almost 90,000 acres burned, per the National Interagency Fire Center. But even with the newly burning fire, the United States has had a mild fire season so far, with just 339,359 acres burned across the nation, the fire center said on Tuesday.

This pales in comparison to the inferno that is currently ablaze in Canada, which has burned 27.1 million acres so far this year, per CBS News.

So what makes Canada so fiery these days?

The Times reported that this year’s numbers top Canada’s previous record of more than 18 million acres burned in 1989.

Jennifer Kamau of the Canadian Interagency Forest Fire Center told the Times that because multiple fires started in different areas so early in the season, “demand in every province and territory is high.” With firefighters spread so thin, it was hard to get the fires contained before they spread.

This is why firefighters from the United States and across the world have been moved to help out, NPR reported earlier this summer. The international firefighters’ acting superintendent, Tighe Stoyanoff, told NPR that a lot of the Canadian fires have been in remote arboreal areas of the country that are difficult to get to, delaying personnel’s ability to fight the fires.

“It’s challenging to move around in and challenging to see where the fire is, challenging to see a quarter-mile sometimes,” Stroynoff told NPR. “They use aviation assets pretty heavily — scoopers and helicopters. Helicopters are almost like pickup trucks up here.”

Last winter, Canada had a less-than-normal snowpack, the British Columbia Ministry of Forests said in a bulletin, which could lead to drier vegetation and easier material to ignite common in wildfire risk, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Utah’s record snowpack isn’t an excuse to forget about wildfire season