Update at 7:24pm: The Ferguson Fire grew by 2,829 acres Monday, measuring 94,331 acres by the evening report with containment up to 39 percent.
Incident Command officials say moderate fire behavior Monday allowed firefighters to make significant progress around the fire perimeter.
Firefighters were able to hold the northern portion of the fire within containment lines and complete the firing operation along Montgomery Ridge. Once cooled, the northern perimeter of the fire will be secured, freeing up resources to assist with other parts of the fire.
Firefighters constructed direct hand line above El Portal and Old El Portal. Crews were able to reinforce dozer and hand line around the community of Foresta. Firefighters are patrolling and mopping up this section of hand line.
Tactical firing operations will begin tonight along Wawona Road (Highway 41) toward Cascades picnic area. Firefighters will patrol along Highway 120 to ensure the fire stays between Wawona Road and Highway 120.
A combination of dozer and hand lines was established using a former service road leading to Badger Pass. This containment line will restrict the southern spread of fire into Yosemite National Park. Structure defense specialists and law enforcement remained within the remaining evacuated communities. Steep terrain, dense forests of beetle-killed trees, unstable slopes and other hazards have made securing the area a challenge.
A total of 2,357 personnel assigned includes 202 engines; 18 water tenders; 14 helicopters; 39 crews; 33 dozers and 5 masticators.
Update at 6:15pm: Ferguson Fire Incident Command officials at 6 p.m. lifted some evacuation orders for residents only, adding that the areas remain under Fire Advisement in the event that conditions change.
Evacuation orders lifted for the following areas: El Portal; Old El Portal; El Portal Trailer Court; Rancheria Flat-Government Housing; Incline Road; Yosemite View Lodge area and all other residents and businesses along Highway 140 from Midpines to the Yosemite National Park Entrance.
Residents must use the entry point at Highway 140 in Midpines and be advised that due to the large amount of emergency equipment in the area, speed control will also be enforced.
Evacuation orders remains in effect for: Anderson Valley; Foresta; Old Yosemite in the Greeley Hill area; Yosemite West Road.
Closures in the Highway 140 area from 1.5 miles west of Midpines are open to residents only.
Other road closures are: Anderson Valley Road; Big Oak Flat Road/Highway 120 from entrance of Yosemite National Park to Crane Flat; Foresta Road; Wawona Road from the South Entrance gate to Yosemite Valley; Summit Road; Old Yosemite Road/Coulterville Road; Tioga Pass Road from Crane Flat to White Wolf.
Mariposa County Sheriff’s Office will continue to have a heavy presence in the area for the security and safety of residents and businesses. If at anytime you feel unsafe, please call 911. For questions or concerns regarding power, please contact PG&E at 800-743-5000. The public is reminded to stay vigilant on current fire conditions. Please continue to adhere to road closures and any evacuation warnings. If you see electrical wires on the ground, stay clear and contact PG&E immediately. Trees and poles with deep charring, particularly if still smoking, should be considered hazardous.
Update at 3:07pm: Caltrans is closing a stretch of highway due to the Ferguson Fire incident, which is still being reported as 91,502 acres with 38 percent containment.
Caltrans officials announced Highway 140 is now closed for approximately 21 miles in Mariposa County between the end of the climbing lane and the Yosemite National Park entrance. Highway 41 and Highway 120 entrances to Yosemite are also closed with no estimated time of opening. Tioga Road and Tuolumne Meadows are open and accessible from the east via 395.
Update at 11:10am: Citing progress made containing the Ferguson Fire, the Mariposa County Sheriff’s Office is lifting the mandatory evacuation order for the community of Wawona. Only residents are now allowed to re-enter via the Highway 41 south entrance into Yosemite.
Evacuation orders remain in place for Yosemite West, Old El Portal, Rancheria Flat- Government Housing, Trailer Court, Foresta, Anderson Valley, Incline Rd, Cedar Lodge, Yosemite View Lodge area and Old Yosemite. The fire is around 91,500 acres and there is 38-percent containment.
Update at 9:45am: Tuolumne County is declaring a local state of emergency due to the wildfires. Click here for more information.
Original story posted at 8:38am: Mariposa, CA — The Ferguson Fire in Mariposa County, which has been burning since July 13, is 91,502 acres and there is 38-percent containment.
2,689 firefighters are assigned to the incident, 20 water tenders, 14 helicopters, 40 crews and 33 dozers. Yesterday firefighters successfully completed a tactical firing operation south of Wawona to the South Fork of the Merced River. It was a significant achievement in the overall fight, according to the incident command team. It further protects the community of Wawona and the Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias. Along the northern perimeter, crews kept the fire from crossing Highway 120 above the Merced Grove. Hazard trees were also removed near Big Oak Flat Road. Firefighters are burning along dozer constructed containment lines from the tunnel on Big Oak Flat Road toward Highway 140 in order to prevent the fire from spreading northeast from Foresta.
Yosemite Valley remains closed indefinitely.