US-NEWS-CALIF-WILDFIRES-WINECOUNTRY-PREPARED-5-LA

The Glass Fire in Napa County burns on a mountainside with the Beckstoffer Vinyards in the foreground on Monday in St. Helena.

CALISTOGA – At least 80 homes have been destroyed in Napa and Sonoma counties as the Glass fire continues to rampage through Northern California’s wine country.

The blaze had burned 42,560 acres as of Tuesday – nearly quadrupling in size since Monday morning – and there is still no containment, according to Erick Hernandez, a public information officer with the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, or Cal Fire.

So far, Hernandez said, crews had confirmed that the fire has destroyed 52 residences in Napa County and 28 in Sonoma County.

Figures on how many commercial structures had been affected were not available Tuesday morning, he said.

The fire burned rapidly Sunday through Napa Valley’s Silverado Trail, raising concerns about the fate of the area’s famed wineries.

Napa and Sonoma counties are home to more than 800 wineries, according to their tourism associations, and many are family owned.

One building that was lost was the distinctive stone structure at the Chateau Boswell Winery in St. Helena, which marked its 40th anniversary last year.

Officials said Monday evening that at least eight wineries were damaged.

The winding road to Chateau Boswell was flanked by smoldering brush and trees Tuesday morning as firefighters worked to quell the flames scorching the region.

Just off Silverado Trail, downed power lines and burned cars blocked one of the mountain paths to the winery, known for its Cabernet, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.

The vineyard’s entrance was roped off by yellow sheriff’s tape. Singed cypress trees towered over the driveway that now leads to scorched rubble and earth.

Santa Rosa Fire Chief Tony Gossner said Tuesday that his department had called in all possible personnel to fight the Glass fire.

“Every available firefighter that could work came to work,” he said during a briefing, noting that crews’ top priorities for Tuesday were extinguishing the fire and maintaining perimeter control.

Of particular focus is the mountainous area between Calistoga and Angwin.

“We’re going to be in this for a couple of weeks,” Gossner said. “It’s going to be long, and it’s going to be painful for those that are dealing with it. So take a deep breath, take care of yourself and take care of your neighbors.”

Though Cal Fire officials could not immediately confirm the acreage breakdown by county, they emphasized that California’s wildfire-fighting infrastructure is “one of the strongest and most diverse in the nation.”

“This is a large fire,” Cal Fire Unit Chief Shana Jones said. “We’re at 42,000 acres covering two counties. That is a lot of territory, and it’s a lot of work.”

Although no injuries have been confirmed, tens of thousands of people have been forced to flee from the fire.

Sonoma County Sheriff’s Department spokesman Sgt. Spencer Crum said some 68,000 residents had been ordered to leave.

Large swaths of Santa Rosa remain under mandatory evacuation orders, as does the entire city of Calistoga, a Napa Valley community of about 5,000 people.

Recommended for you