Sierra foothills wildfire destroys 233 homes

Two fire fighting helicopters pass near each other over Willow Creek Canyon as a wildfire continues burning in the Sierra near Bass Lake, Calif., Monday, July 27, 2015. More wildfires have torn across California so far this year compared with the same period of 2014, but firefighters said Monday that efforts to confine and extinguish the latest blazes have been more successful than in the past. (Eric Paul Zamora/The Fresno Bee via AP)

Calaveras County (KRON)  The number of homes destroyed by a fire in the Gold Rush country of the Sierra Nevada foothills has risen to 233.

The blaze in Amador and Calaveras Counties has charred more than 112 square miles and was 40 percent contained on Tuesday. It is still threatening another 6,400 structures.

Forecasters say Northern California weather conditions are changing and the area could see some precipitation Wednesday.

In another fire burning, The Fresno County Sheriff’s Office has lifted mandatory wildfire evacuation orders for dozens of residents in the small Central California communities of Dunlap, Miramonte, and Pinehurst east of Fresno.

California’s largest active wildfire had charred 217 square miles of grass, brush and timber since it was sparked by lightning July 31. It was 40 percent contained Tuesday.

For the first time in more than six weeks, firefighters are getting a handle on the fire that now has flames simmering in places. It has also moved away from the Sierra Nevada’s Giant Sequoia trees, some of which are 3,000 years old.

 

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