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Foothill fire burns 2 square miles
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ALTANTA (AP) — Fire authorities said Sunday a wildfire at the foothills of the Sierra Nevada has burned a little over 2 square miles of drought-stricken timber and not 6 square miles as it had been reported.

Cal Fire said it downgraded the size of the fire after doing better mapping of the burned area.

The blaze erupted at around 2:30 p.m. and forced evacuations of some communities in and near Nevada County, about 45 miles northeast of Sacramento.

Hundreds of firefighters aided by air tankers fought the blaze, which was 5 percent contained. It was in a rugged creek drainage area that fire engines couldn’t reach so crews were hiking or being dropped by helicopter, state fire spokeswoman Lynne Tolmachoff said.

Homes and small ranches dotted the heavy timber. Mandatory evacuations were called for 150 homes in the areas of Red Dog, Chalk Bluff and You Bet in Nevada County, and the community of Cascade.

Meanwhile, firefighters gained ground against a wildfire near Napa Valley wine country, and on Sunday that fire was 60 percent contained. Fire officials ended all evacuation orders and road closures.

The Napa-area blaze has burned more than 10 square miles of drought-parched countryside near Lake Berryessa, about 45 miles east of wine country.

To the south in San Diego County, a small wildfire that chewed through dry timber in the Cleveland National Forest was 20 percent contained Sunday. The 167-acre blaze, which broke out Friday, was not threatening structures, but it briefly forced the closure of the Palomar Observatory on Saturday. The cause is under investigation.