California Wildfire Out of Control Near Yosemite National Park.

A destructive wildfire near Yosemite National Park, July 25, is burning out of control and has grown into one of California’s biggest blazes of the year.

The fast-moving brush fire exploded in size Saturday, prompting evacuation orders for thousands of people and shutting off power to more than 2,000 homes and businesses.

The Oak Fire started Friday afternoon southwest of the park near the town of Midpines in Mariposa County and by Saturday morning had rapidly grown to 26.5 square kilometers (10.2 square miles), according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, or Cal Fire. It erupted as firefighters made progress against an earlier blaze that burned to the edge of a grove of giant sequoias in the southernmost part of Yosemite National Park.

Evacuation orders were put in effect Saturday for more than 6,000 people living across a several-mile span in the sparsely populated, rural area, said Daniel Patterson, a spokesman for the Sierra National Forest.

By Saturday morning, the fire had destroyed 10 residential and commercial structures, damaged five others and was threatening 2,000 more structures, Cal Fire said. The blaze prompted numerous road closures, including a shutdown of Highway 140 between Carstens Road and Allred Road — blocking one of the main routes into Yosemite.

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