4. SOUNDBITE: (English) Eli Iskow, Fire Captain, Santa Barbara County:
"We made a lot of good progress on this fire overnight, on the sides that are most threatening are populated areas. It is not buttoned up, it's not closed up, but the winds have given us a little break and we made some good progress and now we are really focusing today on finishing that work, hopefully today and tomorrow (Monday) and getting a chance to lock in the top side, on the east end that is threatening a community, up on top of west Camino Cielo."
5. Close-up of flames
6. Pan right from fire to firefighters
7. Flames and smoke
8. SOUNDBITE: (English) Eli Iskow, Fire Captain, Santa Barbara County:
"Really all we have lost so far is some out buildings, mobile homes, some vehicles. The guys through really hard, aggressive work have saved hundreds of homes, we have lost zero residences, at this point."
Big Sur, California - 6 July 2008
9. Various of flames and smoke on hillside
10. Wide of heavy smoke and flames on hillside, zoom-in to firefighters' helicopter flying overhead
11. SOUNDBITE: (English) Mark Savage, Fire Information Officer:
"We wished we had a better weather forecast, but we know that we are going to be challenged in the next few days in those areas, so we really need to get a bigger buffer for us, and that's the plan. But with the fire spotting, it can spot up to a half, to three-quarters of a mile (1.2 kilometres), embers are falling and igniting outside of, in some of our containment lines and some areas, we are able to pick it up with aircraft, but that certainly is a challenge for us as well and it's happening on all areas of the fire."
12. Various of firefighters cutting back excess brush as fire approaches
13. Helicopter dropping water on fire
14. Plane dropping fire retardant on fire
15. Flames and smoke
16. Plane dropping fire retardant
17. Various of homes destroyed by fire
18. Destroyed home with remnants of oven in background
Firefighters on Sunday took advantage of cooler, damper weather to battle a vast blaze ravaging Santa Barbara County as they tried to gain a foothold against the fire before the expected return of hotter, drier conditions.
Moist air currents from the ocean cooled temperatures to the high 70s (about 26 Celsius) on Sunday, helping fire crews keep the four-day-old blaze from spreading.
"We made a lot of good progress on this fire overnight," Santa Barbara County Fire Captain Eli Iskow told AP Television on Sunday.
"We are really focusing today on finishing that work, hopefully today and tomorrow (Monday) and getting a chance to lock in the top side, on the east end that is threatening a community," he added.
Iskow explained that, thanks to the hard work of the firefighters, damage was limited.
"All we have lost so far is some out buildings, mobile homes, some vehicles," he said.
"The guys through really hard, aggressive work have saved hundreds of homes, we have lost zero residences," he added.
The fire, which has been burning since Tuesday, was less than a third contained on Sunday afternoon.
Temperatures were forecast to start climbing on Monday and to reach the 90s (32 Celsius) by Thursday.
So far, the fire has consumed 13 square miles (33 square kilometres) of Los Padres National Forest and has placed nearly 2,700 homes in jeopardy.
Officials have ordered mandatory evacuations for hundreds of those homes, and issued warnings for others farther from the fire's path.
Firefighting crews have made good progress in controlling the fire's eastern and southern flanks, but flames moved aggressively to the west and northwest early on Sunday, according to a statement from the Santa Barbara Ranger District.
The fire was blazing through forest in extremely steep, rocky terrain.
Investigators suspect the fire was human-caused.
The US Forest Service has asked for public help in determining how it was set.
Sunday's cooler weather also helped firefighters advance on a two-week-old blaze that has destroyed 22 homes in Big Sur, at the northern end of the Los Padres forest.
AP Television footage showed firefighters battling the flames from helicopters, planes and from the ground.
Fire Information Officer Mark Savage told AP Television that the days ahead would still present big challenges for his crews.
"We wished we had a better weather forecast, but we know that we are going to be challenged in the next few days in those areas, so we really need to get a bigger buffer for us, and that's the plan," he said.
The fire, which has charred 113 square miles (293 square kilometres), was 11 percent contained, a slight jump from the day before.
Fire officials said crews were burning out brush between the fire's edge and Big Sur's famed restaurants and hotels and cutting more lines to halt flames creeping down from ridge tops.
Wildfires have burned more than 800 square miles (2,072 square kilometres) and destroyed at least 69 homes throughout California, mainly in the northern part of the state, in the past two weeks.
One firefighter died of a heart attack while digging fire lines.
About 1,400 fires have been contained, but more than 330 still burned out of control on Sunday morning.