Ponderosa Fire in Butte impacts Plumas

A school bus sign hangs upside down as emergency vehicles drive along Lumpkin Road in the Ponderosa Fire area above Oroville Wednesday

Ten homes have been destroyed and 500 more are threatened near the Northern California town of Oroville. Seven ranches were threatened, and full containment isn't expected for a week.

Nevada National Security Site spokeswoman Tracy Bower said Thursday that the fire covers nearly 4 square miles (10 square kilometers) in the western part of what used to be the Nevada Test Site.

In Montana, authorities have ordered about 1,000 homes and businesses to evacuate near Seeley Lake, a popular destination for boaters, anglers and hikers about 100 miles (161 kilometers) northwest of Helena. The vast majority got there by a state highway that was closed for several hours because of the fire. But there was no immediate threat to the festival, and there were no reports of injuries. That blaze reached 3,680 acres by Friday afternoon and was 30 percent contained, Cal Fire said in a release.

The temperature in Oroville hit 108 degrees (42 degrees C).

This post has been updated to show that the highway leading to Burning Man has reopened.

Officials with the Sierra National Forest said Tuesday they blocked traffic on Highway 41, but other entryways into Yosemite remain open. More than 1,000 nuclear detonations occurred at the former Nevada Test Site north of Las Vegas from 1951 to 1992.


Jerry Brown on Friday, Sept. 1, issued an emergency declaration for a wildfire burning in the northern part of the state, the same day that John Ballenger was charged with arson and accused of starting the blaze.

Butte County District Attorney Mike Ramsey said Friday prosecutors believe Ballenger had been maintaining for days a campfire along a creek known as Sucker Run near the dam at Ponderosa Reservoir. But neither he nor the U.S. Forest Service have said how many.

The wildfire is burning in the sparsely populated area east of Lake Oroville, about 70 miles (113 kilometers) north of Sacramento.

A central California wildfire has closed the southern roadway leading into Yosemite National Park.

11 News has done multiple stories on why the SuperTanker has not been used in Colorado to help fight fires.

The 2,000-acre blaze triggered the closure of a section of the 210 Freeway as it tore through brush, and authorities also told residents of 200 homes in the area to evacuate because of the approaching flames, said Los Angeles Fire Department spokeswoman Margaret Stewart.

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