Mountain Fire: Riverside County fire expected to be contained Tuesday

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Fire officials expect the 27,531-acre Mountain Fire to be fully contained Tuesday, more than two weeks after it was sparked by electrical equipment failure on private property northeast of Idyllwild. 

The fire, which broke out July 15 and destroyed 23 structures, including seven residences, was 99 percent contained Monday, according to the U.S. Forest Service.  A total of 182 personnel were still working the smoldering fire on Tuesday. Crews were expected to fill in all of the gaps in the containment line by 6 p.m. Tuesday.

The Forest Service said the fire continues to smolder in heavy down and dead material in the northwest section of the burn area.

The firefighting costs have reached $25.6 million.   

Incident commander Chris Fogle praised the work of firefighters and remained confident they would achieve 100 percent containment Tuesday.

All Forest Service campgrounds and day-use areas located along Highway 243, San Jacinto State Park and Wilderness - and all hiking and mountain biking trails out of Hurkey Creek County Campground and the May Valley area remain closed.  

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