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Yosemite Wildfire Threatens San Francisco Water, Power Supply

 Getty Images

Getty Images

(SF GATE) -- Late Friday, Gov. Jerry Brown declared a state of emergency for San Francisco, 150 miles from the fire, acknowledging the threat to the city's power lines and stations in the fire area. He had already declared a state of emergency in Tuolumne County this week, which will help free up money and resources to fight the blaze. The blaze crossed into Yosemite's western boundary Friday, authorities said, and forested land around Lake Eleanor was aflame. The relatively low-elevation section of park was closed to the public, and the park's Highway 120 entrance remained closed.

Most of the park is still open and can be reached via Highway 140 from Merced and Highway 41 from Fresno.

Park officials said they didn't think the fire would affect visitors - at least anytime soon. On Friday, the blaze was at least 20 miles from popular Yosemite Valley.

"If it continues to move in the direction it has in the last day or so, it's just moving into wilderness," said park spokeswoman Kari Cobb. "There's no structures, nothing there."

In Groveland, a popular gateway to the park on Highway 120, merchants said tourism had ground to a halt. Jenn Edwards, owner of the Hotel Charlotte, said she was getting phone calls from visitors canceling their vacations.

She and her husband, who now have an 8-week-old baby boy, moved to Groveland a year and a half ago from Seattle to open the hotel.

"I always thought that in California, you have to worry about earthquakes," she said, "but up here it's fire." Read more via SF Gate...

 

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