Northern California wildfires spreading

A wildfire that's threatening 700 homes and buildings in rural Northern California continues to grow explosively as firefighters struggle in rough terrain to contain it.

Posted: Jul 2, 2018 10:46 PM
Updated: Jul 2, 2018 10:47 PM

GUINDA, Calif. (AP) - A wildfire that's threatening 700 homes and buildings in rural Northern California continues to grow explosively as firefighters struggle in rough terrain to contain it.

No homes have burned but the blaze is surging through sparsely populated areas of Yolo and Napa counties about 50 miles (80 kilometers) from the state capitol of Sacramento.

As of Monday night, flames had devoured 60,000 acres of tinder-dry grass, brush and oak. That's nearly 94 square miles (about 243 square kilometers) - nearly the size of Sacramento.

The so-called County Fire erupted Sunday and at times has grown by 1,000 acres an hour.

Smoke and ash are contributing to poor air quality in the San Francisco Bay Area and California wine country.

Hot, dry conditions are fueling blazes in several states in the U.S. West.

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9 p.m.

DENVER (AP) - More than 100 homes have been destroyed by a Colorado wildfire that investigators say was started by an illegal campfire.

San Luis Valley Emergency tweeted Monday night that 104 homes have been destroyed so far by the wildfire east of Fort Garland. The blaze has burned 89 square miles (230 square kilometers) and forced the evacuation of more than 2,000 homes since last Wednesday.

According to court documents, 52-year-old Jesper Joergensen initially said he had started a fire to burn trash but then said he had been grilling in a permanent fire pit the day before the blaze began. Joergensen, who reported the wildfire, is from Denmark and has been living in the country illegally. It's not clear if he has an attorney.

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6:10 p.m.

Authorities have ordered people in about 50 homes to evacuate because of a wildfire north of Bend, Oregon, in Warm Springs.

KTVZ-TV reports a smoldering fire near the former Warm Springs wood mill sparked a fire in high winds Monday afternoon that also shut down Highway 26 near the Deschutes River.

It wasn't immediately known how much land had burned.

Warm Springs tribal assistant fire management officer William Wilson says the fire jumped the highway and was moving toward a neighborhood on the reservation where the evacuation notices were issued.

Other people in nearby homes have been told to be set to leave.

Wilson said the mill fire has been burning since last year in areas of sawdust and bark where firefighters typically don't go because of associated hazards.

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3:15 p.m.

More homes and cabins are being evacuated due to a Utah wildfire near a popular fishing reservoir.

Duchesne County officials issued a new evacuation order Monday for an unknown number of homes east of Strawberry Reservoir, about 80 miles (129 kilometers) southeast of Salt Lake City.

On Sunday, a handful of cabins were evacuated.

Jason Curry of the Utah Division of Forest, Fire and State Lands said the fire has scorched about 10 square miles (27 square kilometers) near Strawberry Reservoir.

Curry said officials couldn't get a size update Monday afternoon due to the fire activity and smoke.

Curry says the blaze started Sunday and officials believe it was human-caused but are investigating.

He says the fire is expected to grow with hot and dry conditions forecast for Monday.

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