North County

A camper was burned near Julian by one of three North County fires that swept through brush and rugged terrain Monday, prompting the indefinite suspension of all backcountry burning in the county.

California Department of Forestry officials declined to release the name of the injured camper, but said he suffered second-degree burns on his face and legs after apparently setting an illegal campfire off Banner Road near Julian.

The campfire sparked a blaze about 7:45 a.m. that eventually consumed 500 acres. The rocky terrain, wind gusts of up to 20 miles an hour, and temperatures over 100 degrees made it difficult to fight the fire. More than 300 firefighters battled the blaze, and some were still monitoring the site at 8 p.m. Monday. No structures were threatened, officials said.

In the two other fires, a small blaze broke out in the early afternoon near Poway Road and California 67, and was contained by about 6 p.m. Five of the fire engines used to battle that fire were later sent to San Vicente Road in Ramona, where another fire covering about 120 acres presented a slight threat to area structures.

However, no houses were evacuated, and firefighters said they expected to have the blaze contained by early this morning.

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