The Sequoia Complex, which includes the Castle and Shotgun Fires in the Golden Trout Wilderness, has burned nearly 56,000 acres as of Monday morning.
The fires had burned 55.961 acres and had been 7 percent contained as of Monday morning. On Sunday Tulare County Sheriff Mike Boudreaux issued a mandatory evacuation order for the Camp Nelson area.
An evacuation order was placed for Camp Nelson, Coy Flat, Mountain Aire and Pier Point. Alpine Village, Sequoia Crest, Redwood Driver, Ponderosa, Cedar Slopes and Pyles Boys Camp remained under evacuation order.
The Red Cross has a temporary evacuation center at Gate 2 at Porterville College's Jamison Stadium available.
A mandatory evacuation order means there's immediate threat to life and property. The fire has slopped over into the Freeman Grove and the area is experiencing dynamic fire activity,” the U.S. Forest stated on Sunday. “Operations personnel are looking for opportunities to stop the fire’s progression.”
Cost to battle the fires had risen to $10 million as of Monday morning. As of Monday morning, 828 people had been evacuated. There were eight injuries that resulted from battling the fires and 661 structues were threatened.
There were 12 hand crews, 45 engines, 21 water tenders, eight dozers, nine helicopters and 587 personnel battling the fires.
The Castle Fire was 7 percent contained. On Sunday firefighters mopped up along the southwest perimeter of the fire in the vicinity of Lloyd Flat. On Sunday, additional resources were moved to the western side of the fire to assist in attacking the fire. The western edge of the fire is approximately 4-5 miles east of Sequoia Crest.
Crews were constructing direct fireline and using old firelines on the northeast side of the fire in the Inyo National Forest to implement point protection to protect critical values at risk. Firefighters were building direct fireline where possible and using heavy equipment and chippers to build contingency lines on the southeastern side of the fire where the fire continues to move towards Little Horse and Osa Meadows. Structure assessment and protection continues for communities impacted by the fire, including Soda Flat, Jordan Hot Springs, and Casa Vieja Meadow, Cedar Slope, Ponderosa, Camp Nelson and Monache Meadows.
As of Monday morning the Castle Fire had burned 55,523 acres, 11,022 acres in the Inyo National Forest and the rest in the Sequoia National Forest.
The Shotgun Fire was estimated at 438 acres. The fire is slowly burning in a rocky drainage and is being monitored by aircraft.
Tulare County residents can sign up for emergency notifications at alerttc.com.
Roads are closed at Johnsondale Bridge and Sherman Pass, Highway 190, and the County Transfer Station, as well as M107 and Mountain Road 50.
Campgrounds closed are Belknap, Coy Flat, Dome Rock, Lower Peppermint, Upper Peppermint and Quaking Aspen.
A temporary flight restriction has been issued for the airspace around the fire complex. Drones are prohibited.
Priorities of protection include: Ponderosa, Cedar Slope, Alpine Village, Sequoia Crest, Redwood Drive, facilities within Trout Meadow, structures along the Lloyd Meadows Road, Pyles Boys Camp, grazing cattle west of North Road, Freeman Creek Grove and other Sequoia groves, the President George H.W. Bush Tree, Camp Whitsett, archeological values, Peppermint Fire Station, Mountain Yellow-Legged Frog and Little Kern Golden Trout Critical Habitats, Pacific Fisher habitats.