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Crews gain ground on California fire but brace for lightning

July 25, 2017 12:04 AM

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Firefighters are bracing for the possibility of dry lightning as they battle a stubborn blaze that has scorched nearly 120 square miles (308 square kilometers) near California's Yosemite National Park.

The wildfire burning in the Sierra Nevada foothills was 50 percent contained Monday. But the state's fire protection agency says it could take crews another two weeks to fully surround it.

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More evacuated residents were allowed to return to their homes Sunday, but flames continue to threaten about 1,500 structures in Mariposa County. The fire is burning about 35 miles (56 kilometers) west of Yosemite, but the park remains open.

The blaze is one of more than a dozen that have ravaged California in recent weeks.

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(Copyright 2017 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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