Yosemite Wildfire Forced Road Closure

August 27, 2009 2:17:48 PM PDT
Four air tankers left Fresno to help battle a wildfire in Yosemite that began as a controlled burn. The crews left Fresno-Yosemite International Airport in East Central Fresno just after 7:00 a.m. Thursday morning.The crews loaded equipment that firefighters will use to battle the out-of-control wildfire in Yosemite.

The 1100 acre fire forced the closure of Highway 120 for several miles. The fire is now ten percent contained.

Nearly 200 firefighters are on hand from several agencies. So far, no buildings are being threatened. Campers at Crane Flat Camp and residents in Foresta have been asked to relocate.
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INFORMATION FROM THE NATIONAL PARK SERVICE WEBSITE:
Big Meadow Prescribed fire: This fire is now an escaped prescribed fire and is being suppressed. Fire Managers estimate that 1,170 acres have burned and the fire is 10% contained.

Fire managers began the burn on the morning of August 26 and in a very short time realized the holding lines were not going to contain the fire within the boundaries of this burn. The fire began spotting across the line into pockets of brush, down and dead logs and standing dead trees (snags) to the east of the community of Foresta. This fire is within the 1990 A-Rock fire scar.

Yosemite Helicopter 551 began bucket drops, which was followed by additional aircraft resources including other water dropping aircraft. Three helicopters and four air tankers (with more on order), along with 15 crews and 24 engines (with more on order) are fighting the fire. A Type 2 Incident Management Team will take over the fire on August 27.

Closures: The Big Oak Flat Road is closed from Highway 140 to Crane Flat and the Foresta road into the community of Foresta. There is no estimated time for the road to re-open. Highway 120 from Big Oak Flat entrance station is open to Crane Flat, on to Tuolumne Meadows, and Highway 395.

Crane Flat Campground and Foresta have been evacuated.

Tamarack Creek (Flat) trail to El Capitan, Old Big Oak Flat trail to El Capitan, and the Rockslides trail to El Capitan are closed.

Visit the National Park Service Website

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