More than 10,000 firefighters battled wildfires Monday from California's Central Coast to Sierra Nevada forests or mopped up remnants of destructive blazes beaten into submission up and down the state.
The Chimney Fire near Lake Nacimiento has burned 31,644 acres and is 35 percent contained as of 6 a.m. Monday, according to Cal Fire. Hearst Castle remains threatened by the fire, and evacuation orders expanded on Sunday night to Bee Rock and other areas north of Lake Nacimiento.
Two helicopters dropped water overnight on the Cedar Fire in an effort to protect the community of Wofford Heights on the northeast side of Lake Isabella. No structures have been damaged or destroyed by the fire, the U.S. Forest Service reported Monday morning, Aug. 22. Slightly stronger winds shifted smoke from the Cedar Fire Sunday afternoon away from the San Joaquin Valley and into Riverkern and Kernville up the Kern River canyon. The Cedar Fire that started Aug. 16 around 4:30 p.m. had burned 19,619 acres and was 5 percent contained by the latest estimate Monday morning, Aug. 22.
Authorities have lifted all evacuation orders affecting thousands of people, less than a week after a wildfire raged through mountainous terrain in Southern California and consumed hundreds of homes and other buildings.
The Chimney Fire grew to 19,909 acres Saturday, and flames inched closer to historic Hearst Castle. Fire crews attempted to stop the encroaching blaze as it crept to within a few miles of the iconic landmark.
Less than a week after the destructive Blue Cut fire broke out in the mountains of San Bernardino County, destroying more than 100 homes, authorities canceled all evacuation orders Sunday and allowed residents to return.