Road to Yosemite open after being closed by fire |

Road to Yosemite open after being closed by fire

Staff Reports
Firefighters work through the smoke in the Walker Fire located south of Lee Vining.
U.S. Forest Service |

Fire officials reopened the eastern route into Yosemite National Park on Monday afternoon.

Tioga Pass Road was closed by the 3,700-acre Walker fire, burning two miles south of Lee Vining. The fire, which was started by human activity 9:31 p.m. Friday, is threatening 235 homes according to the U.S. Forest Service.

On Sunday night, five hand crews were able to get a line around a tenth of the fire with the help of two bulldozers.

Today crews are building containment lines on the west, south and eastern flanks supported by two air tankers and five helicopters.

Fire officials say the north flank of the blaze is actively burning and has led to evacuations in Lee Vining Canyon.

Tioga Pass Road will remain closed until at least noon Tuesday as crews work to strengthen firelines.

The fire is burning in pine, mahogany and brush.

Visitors and residents should expect to see smoke from the June Lake and Lee Vining area and along Highway 395.

An alert has been issued to Lee Vining residents and everywhere north of Double Eagle in June Lake to be prepared for evacuations. Campgrounds in Lee Vining Canyon and Walker Lake fishing camp have been evacuated. Tioga Pass and Saddlebag resorts have been advised to evacuate.

Lee Vining is a center for fire operations directing about 400 firefighters, and officials are asking that visitors avoid the area.

Firefighters have a line halfway around the 150-acre Eagle Two Fire burning near Bridgeport.

The Buckeye Campground remains closed at this time due to continued fire traffic. Additional closures include portions of the Eagle Creek and Buckeye trails. These areas are closed until further notice.