Firefighting crews are inching ever closer to fully containing a massive inferno in the Sierra National Forest, an update from the U.S. Forest Service reported Thursday.
The Aspen fire, which began on July 22 from a lightning strike, has been 80 percent contained and has burned 22,090 acres less than 55 miles east-northeast of Madera, the update said.
The cost of fighting the fire increased to $26.5 million, according to the update. More personnel are being sent home, leaving 1,236 fighting the blaze.
Smoke from the fire continues to permeate throughout Valley air, the update said, and may remain for several months...