California has been hit by one of the largest wildfires in history, burning more than 192,000 acres in Yosemite area, with 4,500 structures still in the danger zone.
Now on its 12th day, the historic fire has darkened the sky in Yosemite with smoke likened to a “thunderhead cloud” as described by witnesses.
The cost of damages has now reached $39 million according to authorities.
Called as “Rim Fire”, it has spread in various directions around the Yosemite National Park and reached the shores of the reservoir which supplies water to 2.6 million customers in the Bay Area.
Although 30% has been contained, the U.S. Forest Service said that the tough fire will continue for weeks.
The inferno has now spread in some parts of the Yosemite National Park and authorities are trying to protect the rare plants, animals and trees including the Giant Sequoias, which are only found in this place.
The Yosemite Park is located in the Sierra Nevada Mountains and is known to be a tourist mecca because of the rare fauna, flora and amazing types of scenery.
In 1984, it has been recognised as a World Heritage Site due to its beautiful waterfalls, granite cliffs and other scenic wonders.
The park is also known for rare species of plants and animals.
Interesting facts about Yosemite National Park
- The park has an area of 761,268 acres with 95% of the land still in natural state or very minimal human activities.
- More than 3 million tourists come to the place yearly to visit the Yosemite Valley, a popular tourist attraction for its natural beauty.
- Historical records show that people have lived in Yosemite Valley for almost 3000 years.
- The longest-lived and tallest trees in the world known as the Giant Sequoia are found in this Park.
- The world’s most famous rock climbing site, El Capitan, and the highest waterfall in North America, Yosemite Falls, are located in the Yosemite Valley.
- Famous for granite cliffs, domes, thousands of lakes, ponds, clear streams and miles of hiking trails.
- Declared as National Park in October 1, 1890.