8,300 firefighters are working day and night to contain nearly 400 square miles of fire, a blaze that has quickly become one of California’s largest wildfires in history.
Burning just north of Yosemite National Park, and into the park itself, the Huffington Post reports that the Rim Fire has consumed approximately 225 acres of forest. The fire began on August 17th, however firefighters believe they have only been able to contain about 7% of the blaze. The firefighters have been clearing brush, digging trenches and starting back blazes. Sadly, strong winds have contributed to the spread of fire.
No human life has been lost so far, and the Yosemite Valley, the most popular area of the park for visitors, is safe for now. High priorities for park employees and firefighters are to protect the Hetch Hetchy Reservoir, San Francisco’s main water source, and a section of Yosemite filled with ancient giant sequoia groves.
The National Park Service is reporting on their website, “Most of Yosemite National Park is not affected by the fire and is relatively smoke-free. The northern part of the park, including some areas along the Tioga Road, has some smoke.”
The park stretches nearly 1200 square miles and contains waterfalls, grand meadows, deep valleys, ancient giant sequoias as well as 400 species of vertebrates like bobcats, grizzly bears, mule deer, the Sierra Nevada red fox and so many more. We hope everyone remains safe during this fire, and that it will be out soon before it destroys too much more habitat, both human and animal.
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