updated 9/7/2009 5:51:30 PM ET 2009-09-07T21:51:30

Firefighters have canceled their plans to burn out brush to create a buffer south of the deadly arson fire in mountains near Los Angeles, because of a flare-up on another edge of the blaze.

Fire spokesman David Ortiz says aircraft, which are necessary to support and monitor burnout operations, were diverted to the fire's northeastern flank Monday after flames kicked up. There are 19 helicopters and eight fixed-wing aircraft fighting the fire.

Plans to airlift hand crews into rugged parts of the San Gabriel Wilderness were also scaled back.

Ortiz says a firefighter fell and had to be airlifted out Sunday night, bringing the total number of injuries on the Station fire to 11.

Officials say the flames have reached the bottom of the south face of Mount Waterman, which has a small ski area on its northern side.

More than half contained
The blaze was 56 percent contained Monday morning, but Forest Service spokesman Nathan Judy said residents of Pasadena and other foothill cities near the San Gabriel Mountains would see firefighters still hard at work.

"If people see crews working around their neighborhoods without any smoke or flames near by, that's contingency work. It's not because fire's coming that way," Judy said. "If temperatures go up, if humidity goes down again and the winds pick up, we want to be prepared for whatever happens."

Monday's temperatures are expected to peak in the mid-80s, giving firefighters a much needed break from last week's triple-digits.

Fire officials said the blaze has blackened 157,220 acres, or 246 square miles, of forest as it burns deeper into the wilderness in its thirteenth day.

Crews were hoping for gentle winds that will allow them to conduct back burns to remove fuels and create a buffer between the active flames on the eastern edge and the San Gabriels, the steepest mountain range in Southern California.

"Even the mountain goats won't climb in there because it's so steep and rugged," Judy said.

What's left of the fire wasn't burning aggressively and was only feeding off of leaf litter on the ground and old growth and dead timber, he said.

At least 78 homes destroyed by blaze
Damage assessment teams counted 78 homes, two commercial buildings, and dozens of outbuildings destroyed by the flames.

About 4,600 firefighters soldiered on while investigators analyzed clues found at a burnt hillside near the Angeles Crest Highway, where the fire started. Officials have said the cause of the fire was arson, but have not released any findings.

Because of the deaths of the two firefighters, Los Angeles County authorities opened a homicide investigation last week. Los Angeles County firefighters Tedmund Hall and Arnaldo Quinones were killed Aug. 30 while seeking an escape route for their inmate fire crew after flames overran their camp on Mount Gleason.

The temporary city that sprang up to house, bathe and feed firefighters will be relocated from at a large park in the Lakeview Terrace neighborhood of Los Angeles to another park near Irwindale to the east, closer to the active fire, fire officials said Monday.

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