Crews make progress against wildfire near Gold Rush-era town

Firefighters were making progress early Monday against a wind-driven wildfire in Northern California that has scorched 650 acres near a Gold Rush-era town and forced evacuations of 200 homes.

The blaze, dubbed the Oregon fire, started about 4:36 p.m. Sunday off Highway 299 just two miles west of Weaverville, a small town that is situated at the base of the Trinity Alps Wilderness and is known for its gold mining history. The town is also on the National Register of Historic Places.


Firefighters have been able to increase containment of the wildfire to 25%, Cris Hartman, spokeswoman for the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, said Monday morning.

A barn house was destroyed in the blaze, she added.

The fast-moving fire was burning in "extremely steep terrain" and was being pushed by strong winds, CalFire said.

Fire officials ordered mandatory evacuations for Weaver Bally Loop and Victory Lane residents as the blaze burned north of the town.

Mandatory evacuations were also ordered for: Weaver Bally Estates, Easter Avenue, Ridge Road, Weeks Road, Leslie Lane, Airport Road, East Weaver Creek, Red Hill Road, Barbara Road, 5 Cent Gulch Street, Red River Road, Browns Ranch Road and Brooks Road North of Highway 3 and Highway 299.

Offiicals said evacuees were being moved Monday from Weaverville Elementary School to the First Baptist Church on Highway 299.

Classes at Trinity High School was canceled Monday due to the wildfire.

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