It tore through canyons and flew over ridges in every direction with astonishing speed, sending flames 80 feet skyward and forcing tens of thousands to flee their homes.
The Southern California wildfire that began as a small midmorning patch of flame next to Interstate 15 in the Cajon Pass had by Tuesday's end turned into a 30,000-acre monster that had burned an untold number of homes and has no containment.
"This moved so fast," said Darren Dalton, 51, who along with his wife and son had to get out of his house in Wrightwood, a mountain town of 4,500 popular with skiers in winter. "It went from 'have you heard there's a fire?' to 'mandatory evacuation' before you could take it all in. This is a tight little community up here. Always in rally mode. Suddenly it's a ghost town."
Here's a look at the scope of the situation by the numbers:
- 30,000 acres burned
- Over 34,500 homes threatened
- 82,640 people evacuated
- 1,309 fire personnel
- 152 engines
- 18 crews
- 8 air tankers
- 2 large air tankers (VLATS)
- 8 helicopters (including night-flying helicopters)
- 2 evacuation centers
- 4 animal evacuation centers
- 3 school districts impacted
(Source: InciWeb Incident Information System)