More than 200 firefighters have been called to battle a wildfire that broke out near Idyllwild in the San Jacinto Mountains of Riverside County overnight.

The blaze, dubbed the Bonita Fire, began about 1:15 a.m. in the 28000 block of Bonita Vista Drive in the Mountain Center community, according to an incident update from the Riverside County Fire Department.

The Bonita Fire had burned 600 acres and was 0% contained as of 5:45 a.m., an update from the Fire Department stated.

The first arriving engine company reported a 15-acre fire burning in heavy vegetation and pine trees.

The fire quickly spread, prompting evacuation orders for residents of the Mountain Center community.

Residents were asked to use Highway 243 toward Banning and Highway 74 toward the desert to leave the area.

Evacuation updates can be found on the Riverside County Emergency Management Department website.

The fire has prompted officials to close Highway 74 at Morris Ranch Road and Strawberry Creek. Highway 243 is closed at Saunders Meadow, according to the Fire Department.


By Richard Moran

Richard Moran loves to write about sports with the Golden State Online. Before that, he worked as a senior writer at ESPN. Richard grew up in San Diego and graduated from the University of San Diego in 2004, after which he worked as an editor for five years.

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