The Alpine fire hopscotched through parched canyons, destroying 20 structures and scorching more than 400 acres, officials said.
Jerry Brown has declared a state of emergency in Santa Barbara County due to a wildfire that has burned several homes and prompted hundreds of evacuations in the Goleta area. By Saturday afternoon, the Holiday Fire, which began as a structure fire before spreading into nearby brush with the help of sundowner winds, had spread to 100 acres and was at 80 percent containment.
The family stayed the night with friends in town, but Durtschi couldn't sleep.
The flames forced more than 2,000 people to flee their homes, and left thousands more without power, prompting the emergency declaration which frees additional funds for the firefighting effort.
He said numerous people he has talked to were either traveling or away for work when the blaze started Thursday and have not been able to find out the status of their homes. He said he hadn't yet told his two oldest children their home was gone.
Crews also had 50 percent containment of a southwestern Colorado fire that has blackened 85 square miles (220 square kilometers) north of Durango.
Firefighters battling the Klamathon Fire along the California-Oregon border Friday discovered a body within a residence during a welfare check of an evacuated area, authorities said.More news: Oil prices edge up as US supply tightens, Iran sanctions loom
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County Fire Chief Eric Peterson thanked residents for heeding the call to evacuate, allowing firefighters to focus on fire suppression rather than rescues.
In northern California, near the OR border, an 8,000-acre fire has killed one person.
A new blaze erupted Friday night in Santa Barbara County northwest of Los Angeles.
Excessive heat and fire warnings remain in effect from the National Weather Service across much of California, where crews are battling a number of powerful wildfires.
"We don't even have an address because of the devastation around the area", Siskyou County sheriff's Lt. Jeremiah LaRue told the San Francisco Chronicle.
Officials said Saturday morning "crews are now working to complete containment, and to mop up and fix areas impacted by fire suppression actions".
Varying degrees of fire restrictions are in place on many other federal lands in Colorado.
Steep and inaccessible terrain on the north side of the blaze has hampered firefighters, Cal Fire said, and warmer weather this weekend could spell trouble.