The Palm Springs Aerial Tramway was closed Wednesday morning, continuing until further notice.
A total of 228 engines, 10 fixed-wing aircraft, 17 helicopters, 21 water tenders and 15 bulldozers were deployed as of this morning. The cost of operations has reached $6.1 million, according to the Forest Service.
The Mountain Fire ignited in the vicinity of highways 74 and 243, south of Mountain Center, around 1:45 p.m. Monday and has destroyed 23 structures. It's burning at a ``rapid'' rate through timber and chaparral in very steep and rugged terrain, according to the Forest Service.
Late Monday afternoon, two dozen area homes were ordered evacuated -- 20 in the Bonita Vista housing community northeast of Lake Hemet and four at nearby Fleming Ranch -- as was the Living Free Animal Sanctuary in Bonita Vista.
Camp Ronald McDonald and Camp Joe Sherman were voluntarily evacuated because of concerns about air quality.
Evacuation centers have been opened at Hamilton High School in Anza and Hemet and Beaumont high schools, and evacuation centers for animals were set up at Lake Hemet Campground in Garner Valley and the San Jacinto Valley Animal Campus, according to the Forest Service.
The Pacific Crest Trail was closed from Highway 74 to Saddle Junction, as were all of the trails connected to the Pacific Crest Trail in the area. Hurkey Creek County Campground and hiking and mountain biking trails out of the campground and May Valley were also closed.
Large and Small animals can be brought to the San Jacinto Animal Shelter, 581 S. Grand Ave, San Jacinto CA.
Hwy 74 into Hemet
Hwy 243 into Banning
Hwy 74 South towards Anza, Palm Desert
Hwy 74 will be closed in Hemet, no up bound traffic will be allowed
HWY 243 will be closed in Banning, no southbound traffic will be allowed
HWY 243 will be closed at Mountain Center
HWY 74 closed at HWY 371
Hamilton High School, Anza
Hemet High School, Hemet
Beaumont High School