Suppression activities on large wildfires are complicated. Existing suppression literature does not take into account this complexity which leaves existing suppression models and measures of resource productivity incomplete. A qualitative descriptive analysis was performed on the suppression activities described in operational documents of 10 large wildfires in Victoria, Australia. A five-stage classification system summarises suppression in the everyday terms ofwildfire management. Suppression can be heterogeneous across different sectors with different stages occurring across sectors on the same day. The stages and the underlying 20 suppression tasks identified provide a fundamental description of how suppression resources are being used on largewildfires. We estimate that at least 57% of resource use on our sample of 10 large wildfires falls outside of current suppression modelling and productivity research.