MARIPOSA, California — Hundreds of Northern California residents were allowed to return to their homes, as crews aided by lower temperatures and higher humidity extended their lines Wednesday night around a wildfire near a main route into Yosemite National Park, officials said.
Only about 50 homes on two mountain roads remained under evacuation orders, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection said in a statement.
At its peak, the fire, which was sparked Sunday by a campfire that wasn't fully put out before it was abandoned, led to the evacuation of about 800 homes.
But more than 2,000 firefighters have almost completely stopped the blaze's forward progress, state fire spokeswoman Tina Rose said. It has burned about 2 1/2 square miles and was 55 percent contained.
"We almost have this thing buttoned up," she said.
Crews planned to light backfires to take out any potential fuel for the blaze.
One firefighter suffered a minor injury. No homes or buildings were damaged or destroyed.
State Route 140 into Yosemite National Park remained open. Tourists can see some smoke from the road itself, but it does not affect visitors in the park, said park spokesman Scott Gediman. The fire was about 35 miles west of the park's boundary.
In Southern California, an 11-day-old wildfire burning in the San Bernardino National Forest north of Banning was 83 percent contained Wednesday night. Firefighters patrolled the nearly 6-square-mile fire for hotspots and continued to build containment lines. The blaze broke out June 9 near Hathaway Canyon and burned into remote and steep terrain. The cause remains under investigation.
Nearly 600 firefighters remain assigned to the fire, assisted by four helicopters and an airplane, as well as engines, bulldozers and water tenders.
Full containment was expected by June 25.