Hundreds of firefighters were digging trenches, clearing brush and starting back blazes to keep a wildfire raging north of Yosemite National Park out of several mountain hamlets. Inaccessible terrain, strong winds and bone-dry conditions have hampered their efforts to contain the Rim Fire, which began Aug. 17 and has grown to become one of the biggest in California history. Firefighters were hoping to advance on the flames Monday but strong winds were threatening push the blaze closer to Tuolumne City and nearby communities.Property
"This fire has continued to pose every challenge that there can be on a fire...," said Daniel Berlant, a spokesman with the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection. "Its a very difficult firefight." The fire has consumed nearly 225 square miles of picturesque forests. Officials estimate containment at just 7 percent.