| SAN FRANCISCO
SAN FRANCISCO Aug 13 Wildfires are threatening
a nudist resort in Northern California and have forced the
evacuations of more than 480 homes, firefighters said on Monday.
Hundreds of firefighters are battling two fires that started
on Sunday afternoon in Lake County, a tourist area about a two
hours north of San Francisco, said Daniel Berlant, a spokesman
for the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.
The fires forced the closure of a portion of Highway 20, a
major road that runs around Clear Lake, a popular summer
One fire, dubbed the Walker Fire, threatened Wilbur Hot
Springs, a popular nudist resort, as well as nearby ranches,
Berlant said. The other, called the Wye Fire, forced the
evacuation of 480 homes in the Spring Valley area.
"We haven't had rain in months, so the grass and the brush
were incredibly dry. We had triple-digit temperatures, which
create the perfect burning conditions for a wildlife," Berlant
The Wye Fire has burned 3,000 acres (1,200 hectares) and is
roughly 25 percent contained, he said. Three structures were
reported destroyed. The Walker Fire has swept through 2,000
acres and is 30 percent contained.
One firefighter was injured by the Walker fire, and one
civilian by the Wye fire. The Red Cross has set up a shelter for
Investigators are looking into what sparked the blazes. Both
started at about 4 p.m. on Sunday within a couple of miles of
"They started in the grass, burned in the brush and right
into the timber as it gets higher into the ridge," Berlant said.
Wilbur Hot Springs had already been scheduled to close on
Sunday Aug. 12 for 12 days of annual maintenance, according to
In southern Oregon, 201 structures are threatened by a
wildfire that has burned 28,791 acres of rugged, forested land
and is roughly 25 percent contained, officials said. Twenty
homes are subject to evacuation orders, and another 30 have been
told to prepare for evacuation.
More than 1,000 fire fighters are battling the blaze in
temperatures in the nineties fahrenheit, according to fire
spokeswoman Renee Snyder. The so-called Barry Point fire was
sparked last week by lightning. No structures have been
"Mother Nature is not lending us a hand on this one yet,"
(Additional reporting by Teresa Carson in Portland, Oregon;
Editing by Mary Slosson, Cynthia Johnston and David Brunnstrom)