A total of 3,821 personnel have joined the battle to stop the Ferguson Fire, along with 361 fire engines, 55 water tenders and 55 helicopters. Crews also worked to complete a containment line between Eagle Peak and El Portal along the northeast portion of the fire.
Burning its way across steep, rugged terrain with little or no road access, containing the fire has been hard and has left the splendid landscapes of Yosemite cloaked in hazy smoke. The fire remains out of control.
Brandon N. McGlover, of Temecula, was booked Wednesday on suspicion of setting five fires, including one that threatened about 600 homes in the San Jacinto Mountains east of Los Angeles, state fire officials said.
The National Park Service (NPS) posted the news Tuesday, confirming that both the Yosemite Valley and Wawona - which comprise of almost 8,000 acres - would be closed to visitors as of 12 p.m. on Wednesday, July 25.
The fire is about 125 acres and not contained.
This resulted in around 12,000 people living in Idyllwild and the surrounding areas to be evacuated.
Officers detained a motorist for questioning after people called 911 to report a suspicious vehicle near the fire's starting point in Riverside County, the California Highway Patrol said.
Authorities have chose to close certain areas of Yosemite National Park as a massive wildfire continues to rage nearby.
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"This is the prime visitor season, so this wasn't an easy decision to make", Gediman said.
The sun rose in a smoke-filled sky over the scenic valley, which normally bustles with summer tourists but has largely emptied out after authorities reluctantly ordered the closure a day earlier.
One couple checked out of the Majestic Yosemite Hotel, while a large extended family from Los Angeles on an annual trip to the national park prepared to leave the Upper Pines campground.
"These closures include all hotels, campgrounds, and visitor services in Yosemite Valley and Wawona", NPS's message stated.
Yosemite Valley, which hasn't been closed because of fire for nearly 30 years, will be shut down until at least Sunday, along with a winding, mountainous, 20-mile stretch of California's State Route 41, the main artery into the park. The Devil's Hole Fire in eastern Idaho has blazed through 5,000 acres, but officials say it poses no immediate threat. The closure is expected to last through Sunday, the Fresno Bee reported.
Brad Lyons and Courtney Richard, who had traveled from St. Louis and Tulsa to visit the park for the first time, stopped for photos Tuesday at Tunnel View, a popular lookout spot to marvel at at the 7.5-mile long valley and its famous landmarks, including El Capitan and Half Dome.
William Blodgett, of Idyllwild, said he could not get home because of the fire and had to wait along with others at a petrol station in nearby Mountain Center before the flames began to move in his direction.