wildfires

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Incredible Scenes of a California Wildfire

On May 30th, a wildfire started in California’s Angeles National Forest, just a short distance north of Los Angeles. The fire was pushed by dry, erratic winds that destroyed at least six homes near Lake Hughes and damaged many more. The 32,000-acre wildfire had more than 2,000 firefighters working in hot, dry conditions. Some wildfires take weeks until they are 100% contained.

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Fueled by unusually hot May weather and strong winds, wildfires have broken out in more than half a dozen spots in northern San Diego County and spread at a dangerous pace. As of Wednesday night, the fires had burned about 10,000 acres in San Diego County.

Our Metro staff is posting regular updates on the fires, and our photographers continue to add to a photo gallery of the efforts to fight them.

Photos, from top: The moon rises in a smoky sky as seen from Carlsbad (Luis Sinco / Los Angeles Times); the fire in San Marcos (Rick Loomis / Los Angeles Times); an airplane drops fire retardant on a hilltop home that had caught fire near Cal State San Marcos (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times); people stranded by the Fallbrook fire wait outside their cars on the closed southbound I-15 (Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times); Robert Payne hugs his dog Rocky after he was found hiding in the back of his burned home after it was destroyed in the Pointsettia wildfire (Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times).

SOME HELL  Tammy Holmes and her grandchildren took refuge under a wooden jetty as a wildfire raged near their home in Dunalley, Tasmania, Australia, Jan. 4. "We saw tornadoes of fire just coming towards us,"  prompting the family to find cover, said grandfather Tim Holmes, who snapped this iconic photo thinking the childrens’ mother would never see them again.  They spent nearly three hours in the water; all survived.  No deaths have been reported from the wildfires which have ravaged the country in recent days.  (Photo: Tim Holmes via the Associated Press / Wall Street Journal)

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Wildfires rage across Australia amid searing heat

COOMA, Australia (AP) — Firefighters battled scores of wildfires Tuesday in southeastern Australia as authorities evacuated national parks and warned that hot, dry and windy conditions were combining to raise the threat to its highest alert level.

Temperatures soared to 45 degrees Celsius (113 degrees Fahrenheit) in some areas.

No deaths have been reported, although officials in Tasmania were still trying to find about 100 people who have been missing since last week when a fire tore through the small town of Dunalley, east of the state capital of Hobart, destroying around 90 homes. On Tuesday, police found no bodies during preliminary checks of the ruined houses.

"You don’t get conditions worse than this," New South Wales Rural Fire Service Commissioner Shane Fitzsimmons said. "We are at the catastrophic level and clearly in those areas leaving early is your safest option."

(John Grosvenor/Reuters; Rod McGuirk/AP;Chris Kidd/AP)

MOSSLESS: The smoke from these wildfires bring these landscapes out of reality and into some kind of dreamscape. Do the scenes look as picturesque in person?

Young Suh: I am seduced by these scenes. Or, rather, I am seduced by the disappearance of them. The scenes are picturesque, but the disappearance of the landscape is sublime. I think the notion of the sublime implies blindness. It is an overwhelming sense of loss.

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