BIG SUR — A wildfire burning Monday in the Big Sur area of California forced the evacuation of dozens of homes as it chewed through dry vegetation on its way toward the ocean. No injuries were reported.
The fire burned 550 acres in the Pfeiffer Ridge area of Los Padres National Forest near Highway 1, officials said. It had not crossed the key coastal rode, which remained open.
At least two homes were damaged, said Los Padres National Forest spokesman Andrew Madsen, who did not know the exact number of homes under threat.
Big Sur is a popular tourist destination along the Central California coast with high-end resorts and beautiful views of the Pacific Ocean.
Residences were scattered in the path of the fire that was being battled by 300 firefighters. Officials also brought in air tankers and helicopters.
The cause of the fire was under investigation.
A wildfire so late in the year is unusual but not surprising this year given that California is in the midst of the driest calendar year on record.
A lightning-sparked wildfire in 2008 forced the evacuation of Big Sur and blackened 250 square miles before it was contained. The blaze burned more than a dozen homes.