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A large wildfire near Pine Mountain Lake, Calif., which began burning Saturday, Aug. 17, is still growing in size and appears to be moving towards Yosemite National Park.
Yosemite is still open. Part of State Route 120 is closed because of the fire. However, Route 140 and Route 4 are alternate routes to take to the park.
So far, the fire has burned 84 square miles. The steep terrain, which makes fighting the fire difficult, contributed to the fire’s enormous increase in size last night. The Forest Service says in a press release that they will be using airplanes to help them fight this fire.
The small town of Pine Mountain Lake has been evacuated. Tuolumne County passed a resolution to ask Governor Jerry Brown to declare a state of emergency so they can get help to fight the fire.
The U.S. Forest Service is taking a huge financial hit this fire season.
The Forest Service fights most wildfires in the United States, but they only have $50 million left in their annual budget for fighting wildfires, the AP reports. The agency will take $600 million from other park budgets to help fight fires. They have spent nearly $100 million dollars on firefighting this year alone.