"Powerhouse Fire's Twisting Path Tests Firefighters"

"The Powerhouse fire has a dance all its own, and firefighters have struggled to keep up with the flames."

"When it started Thursday, the fire threatened Green Valley in San Francisquito Canyon. Then it veered west toward Castaic Lake before speeding toward Elizabeth Lake and Lake Hughes, almost overrunning the towns. More recently, it has moved north into the Lancaster area.

The fire was pushed by hot winds, but also a potent combination of dense chaparral — some of which hasn't burned since 1929 — and highly flammable grasses.

This old chaparral, with layer upon layer of dead growth underneath, has proven difficult to fight. More water drops are needed to extinguish flames, and fire crews have found it hard to cut through."

Hector Becerra and Christine Mai-Duc report for the Los Angeles Times June 3, 2013.

SEE ALSO:

"California Wildfire Explodes in Size, Burns Homes" (AP)

"Wildfires Rage in West, May Threaten Native American Site" (Reuters)

Source: LA Times, 06/04/2013