Rim Fire, photo courtesy U.S. Forest Service Incident Command
CAMINO, CA - Even as major fires still burn across California, campers and hikers heading into the mountains and foothills for the Labor Day weekend are being urged to take every precaution to avoid starting new fires.
"We can't overemphasize being fire safe this weekend," Cal Fire's Nathan Barcklay said. "Obviously, the temperatures are going to be up, the relative humidity will be down and again, it's critical fire weather."
Even as crews achieved 100 percent containment of the American Fire to the east of Foresthill, several thousand firefighters are still working to contain the Rim Fire that's burned thousands of acres of forest in and beside Yosemite National Park.
"Campfires are still restricted in the forest," Barcklay said. "If you do see one, call 911 and do your best to put it out."
At Ice House Reservoir, just east of Pollock Pines, a campsite of kids and parents from Sacramento and Placerville enjoyed a crackling fire as sparks rose into the night sky.
"The smallest spark, well, we've seen what it's done to Yosemite," said parent Beth Marriot of Placerville. "So yeah, it's very important to be safe this weekend."
The kids had their own suggestions.
"Keep it contained and not let it go wild or something," said Emily Sinnott of Placerville.
"Make sure you put it out before you go to bed," suggested Macee Jones of Pollock Pines.
The suggestions are much appreciated by weary fire crews hoping the weekend will not being new challenges.
"Resources are stretched thin, but we are ready for any initial attack and we are staffed up accordingly," Barcklay said.