Firefighters battling the large wildfire in California that has consumed vast forests in a famous national park say they should completely contain the blaze this week.
The U.S. Forest Service estimates the so-called Rim Fire in and near Yosemite National Park will be 100 percent contained on Friday. As of mid-day Thursday, the fire was 84 percent contained and had consumed 104,000 hectares of land.
Senior Wildland Fire Ecologist Jay Miller told The Associated Press Thursday the massive blaze has left a "nuked" moonscape in the Sierra Nevada mountains that is larger than any area burned in hundreds of years. He said almost 40 percent of the area inside the fire has nothing left on it but charred land.
In this photo provided by the U.S. Forest Service, fire crew members stand watch near a controlled burn operation as they release a very pistol, as they fight the Rim Fire near Yosemite National Park in California, Sept. 2, 2013.
U.S. authorities said last week the Rim Fire was caused by a hunter who lost control of an illegal campfire on August 17.
The country's Forest Service said no arrest has been made in the case.
The fire has destroyed more than 100 structures, including 11 homes, and left an area of 155 square kilometers in which everything is dead.