The fire started near the City of LaCanada in the foothills of the Angeles National Forest, part of the San Gabriel Mountains. Yesterday, 32,000 acres of super-dry Douglas Fir, Scrub Oak and Manzanita were ablaze, fed by 20mph winds. By 4:30pm (EDT) today, the Los Angeles County Fire Department reported that 105,000 acres were involved, and the inferno shows no signs of letting up.
The fire is also threatening the Mount Lukens TV Tower Site, Mount Wilson Communications Facilities and the Observatory itself. Command fears that the blaze may reach these locations within the next 24 hours.
According to the LA County Fire Department website, flames as tall as 80 feet are the norm for this rapidly advancing blaze. The loom-up of dense white smoke could be seen as far as Ventura, along the Pacific coastline.
Unified Command is in place with the US Forestry Service serving as the lead agency.
In addition to USFS fire units, the National Park Service, LA County, LA City, CalFire, Glendale and Pasadena Fire Departments are all in service. In total, 2600 personnel operating from 290 Engines are on the frontlines, being aided by 8 air tankers, 7 heli-tankers and 6 helicopters.