Kern River Canyon fire grows, evacuations called

LAKE ISABELLA — A wildfire in the southern Sierra Nevada has forced evacuations in some communities along the Lower Kern River Canyon.

U.S. Forest Service spokeswoman Cindy Thill says the evacuations began late Tuesday and involve hundreds of residents in a portion of the town of Bodfish and an area known as Myers Canyon. The community of Havilah is on stand-by for evacuations. One home has been destroyed.

The so-called Canyon Fire has burned across more than 6,100 acres since it began Sunday afternoon southwest of Lake Isabella, a popular recreation area about 110 miles north of Los Angeles.

The American Red Cross has set up a shelter at the Kern River Valley Senior Center, located at 6405 Lake Isabella Blvd. A second shelter at Twin Oakes is also open and both shelters are available to help accomodate small and large animals.

More than 1,000 firefighters are on the lines and more than two dozen aircraft are in use.

Thill says firefighting costs reached $2.5 million on Wednesday.

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Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.

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