TUOLUMNE COUNTY – The Rim Fire continued its unrelenting march through the Stanislaus National Forest and Yosemite National Park today, growing to 187,466 acres and resisting firefighters’ efforts to gain more than 23% containment.
The fire has destroyed 111 structures to date.
The recent increase in structures lost is due to the destruction on Sunday of Berkeley Tuolumne Family Camp, which included 3 commercial properties and 85 tent cabins and outbuildings.
At a cost so far of $33 million, the Rim Fire currently has 4,191 personnel assigned to the incident, and three injuries have been reported.
The fire continues to burn in Yosemite National Park and other perimeter areas. In the last 24 hours, the fire slowly grew from 41,620 acres inside Yosemite National Park yesterday to approximately 43,310 acres today.
According to fire managers, the fire activity began early yesterday on the east side of the fire with long range spotting and active crowning in the trees.
Rapid fire growth and extreme fire behavior continue to hamper suppression efforts, and incident commanders are relying heavily on heavy air tankers and helicopters to help get a handle on what has become one of the largest fires in California history.
This will also put fire crews in position to defend the Hodgdon, Crane Flat, and White Wolf facilities.
Firefighters made progress on spot fires in the Reynolds Creek drainage and burning operations south of Duckwall Mountain to Skidmore. Crews also were preparing for additional burning operations on the north side of the Tuolumne River.
Firefighters secured line from Pilot Ridge west towards the Yosemite boundary along Old Yosemite Highway. Aircraft were used to support operations throughout the day. Firefighters will continue with contingency line construction in advance of the communities in the Highway 108 corridor, as well as providing structure protection. For tonight, crews will continue with line construction, structure defense and preparing for burning operations.
Park and Forest Closures
Yosemite National Park has closed Tamarack Flat and Yosemite Creek Campgrounds, both located along the Tioga Road. White Wolf Campground and White Wolf Lodge will remain closed. If you have questions about Yosemite National Park please call 209-372-0327 or 209-372-0329.
The Stanislaus National Forest has issued an area closure for the entire Groveland Ranger District and for the Mi-Wok Ranger District east of Highway 108. Additional details are available from the Groveland Ranger District, 209-962-7825
Highway 120 remains closed to all inbound and outbound Yosemite National Park traffic to Crane Flat Campground. A portion of the Tioga Road, from Crane Flat to White Wolf, will be temporarily closed to all vehicular traffic beginning tomorrow, Wednesday, Aug. 28, at 12 noon. Highway 120 east/Tioga Road remains open from White Wolf east to the Tioga Pass entrance.
Also closed are Graham Ranch Road, Cherry Lake at Highway 120, Evergreen Road and Old Yosemite Road. Highway 120 from Ferretti Road to Buck Meadows remains open only for local residents and business only.
Evacuations and Advisories
A Mandatory Evacuation has been issued for residences north of Old Yosemite Road (Forest Road 2S01). Highway 120 at the Yosemite National Park boundary west to Buck Meadows has been evacuated. An evacuation center is located at the Mother Lode Fairgrounds in Sonora.
An evacuation advisory is in effect from Tuolumne City and the area east of Highway 108 to Pinecrest Lake. An Evacuation Warning has been issued for all residences north of Bull Creek Road (Forest Road 2S02), Bondurant Mine Road, Texas Hill Road, and Wampum Hill.