TODAY   |  August 23, 2013

Massive wildfire near Yosemite spreading fast

A wildfire in California is burning out of control even as more than 1,300 firefighters rush to stop its spread. NBC’s Miguel Almaguer reports.

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>>> wildfire near yosemite national park is burning out of control. it broke out last week. today more than 1300 firefighters have been unable to stop it's quick spread. miguel almaguer is in california where evacuation orders are in place. miguel , good morning.

>> tamron, good morning. the growth potential for this fire is considered extreme. we're only 15 miles per hour from yosemite national park and the fire is moving in that direction.

>> laeping across treats and racing from ridge stops. it went on with no end in sight.

>> it's a very extreme fire. you'll see it increase.

>> thursday this blaze tripled in size. the governor declaring a state of emergency . nearly 2,000 firefighters are on attack, using everything they can to battle the blaze.

>> on this ridge, crews are using fire to fight fire. they're setting this hill afire on purpose so it can close in on this blaze burning in that direction. making the fire burn itself out.

>> reporter: with two homes destroyed, thousands of structures still threatened. evacuations have been ordered. summer camps closed early.

>> i'm shook up but it's in good god's hands.

>> reporter: flames are heading east threatening yosemite national park . for now, just smoke. no immediate taker. nature's beauty not far from mother nature 's fury. with this blaze roughly 1% contained it's cost nearly $3 million just to fight this fire here in california. across the country they have spent more than $1 billion fighting fires this season, tamron.

>>> all right miguel . thank you