Mariposa · Wildfires

Washburn Fire grows as suppression ramps up, blaze 25% contained

For the fourth-straight day, firefighters are battling a blaze in the heart of Yosemite – dubbed the Washburn Fire – aiming to protect key elements of the national park and nearby Valley.

A spokesperson for Yosemite National Park reported more than 500 firefighters from across from California are on-hand to bring the fire under control.

The fire ignited Thursday afternoon, near the Washburn Trail in the Mariposa Grove of Yosemite.

As of Monday morning, the fire spread to more than 2,340 acres, officials announced. That figure represents a gain of 749 acres from Sunday.

The fire is 25 percent contained.

Firefighters have spent considerable time attempting to mitigate fires within the Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias, Federal firefighting officials said.

Aiding the spread of the blaze are a number of dead trees, largely collapsing from 2013 to 2015, that have increased available fuel for the fire.

Fire officials issued evacuation orders for Wawona and Wawona Road south of Yosemite West.

Mariposa Grove is currently closed.

An up-to-date map of closures is available here.

The remainder of Yosemite National Park remains open to visitors.

Les Hubbard is a contributing reporter for The San Joaquin Valley Sun.