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Rim fire in California crosses into Yosemite National Park

Aug. 23, 2013 at 1:20 PM

GROVELAND, Calif., Aug. 23 (UPI) -- The Rim fire, which has burned thousands of acres in California, crossed into Yosemite National Park, fire officials said Friday.

In Montana, firefighters battling the Lolo Creek Complex fire struggled to hold the line, the U.S. Forest Service said.

The Rim fire in Stanislaus National Forest had charred more than 105,000 acres as of 8 a.m. Friday, the forest service said, almost doubling in size since Thursday. It was only 2 percent contained and was spreading both east into the national park and west toward the gated community of Pine Mountain Lake.

Evacuation orders remained in place for communities in the area and Highway 120, one of the major routes across Yosemite, was closed.

"It's growing exponentially," said Jerry Snyder, a spokesman for the U.S. Forest Service, told the San Francisco Chronicle Thursday.

In Montana, the Lolo Creek Complex fire had scarred 9,504 acres and was about 30 percent contained, The Missoulian reported. About 650 firefighters were working that fire.

A red flag warning was posted because of winds gusting as high as 30 mph and possible lightning strikes, the forest service said. Firefighters set up fire lines Thursday and were focused Friday on keeping the blaze from spreading beyond them.

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