Firefighters made significant gains in containing the Colby fire that raged on in Glendora and Azusa for two days, fueled by summer-like temperatures and high winds.
By Saturday, the fire was 61% contained, having burned 1,906 acres, destroyed five homes and damaged 17 other structures, according to the U.S. Forest Service. The last mandatory evacuation order was lifted at 6 p.m., when the 1,000 residents of the Mountain Cove community were allowed to return home. However, California 39 remains closed.
Firefighters worked steadily through the day Saturday and were able to double the containment area much more quickly than they had expected. Earlier, officials had said they hoped to reach 61% containment by Tuesday.
"The weather played a big part," said U.S. Forest Service spokeswoman L'Tanja Watson. "Temperatures were steady and the wind was not as unruly as it was the past few days. It was a good day to do some work."