UPDATED: Mount Wilson fire consumes about 30 acres

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MOUNT WILSON — Firefighters worked today to extinguish a fire that scorched about 30 acres of brush after it broke out before dawn near the Mount Wilson Observatory in the Angeles National Forest above Pasadena.

About 15 residents of the area have been evacuated, officials said. The blaze was reported about 4:45 a.m. in the general area of Mount Wilson-Red Box Road, according to the Los Angeles County Fire Department.

No injuries were reported and no structures have been threatened, the department reported. Deputies from the sheriff’s Crescenta Valley Station helped evacuate Mount Wilson Observatory employees.

At least two helicopters and a SuperScooper aircraft were deployed as
part of the firefighting effort. The units attacked the blaze and surrounding mountainside as curious onlookers in Altadena and Sierra Madre watched three large columns of smoke rise from the blaze.

The cause of the fire remained undetermined.

Smoke appeared to be coming from a canyon east of the observatory and downhill from several television and radio transmitters atop the 5,700 foot summit. The blaze was located near the Bear Canyon campground south of the Angeles Crest Highway.

Weather conditions appeared to help firefighters as a Santa Ana wind condition did not exist in the early morning and temperatures remained fairly moderate. Smoke from the Mount Wilson Fire was visible throughout the region.

Hiking trails to Mount Lowe appeared to be open Tuesday morning.

11:30 a.m. UPDATE FROM CITY NEWS SERVICE:

No injuries were reported and no structures were immediately threatened, the department reported. Deputies from the sheriff’s Crescenta Valley Station helped evacuate the observatory’s employees.

About 140 residents of the Chantry Flats area were notified about the fire, but were not ordered to evacuate, according to Angeles National Forest officials.

According to the U.S. Forest Service officials in Arcadia, about 300 firefighters were working to extinguish the fire, including ANF firefighting personnel and crews from Los Angeles County and Cal Fire. A SuperScooper aircraft and seven helicopters were part of the firefighting effort. Among the helicopters was an Erickson Aircrane helitanker capable of dropping more than 25,000 gallons of water an hour.

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