LAKE ARROWHEAD - The Associated Press reported 425 homes had been burned in the San Bernardino Mountains.

The Grass Valley Fire west of Lake Arrowhead had burned at least 300 homes and the Slide Fire to the east had destroyed 125 homes.

There was zero containment of both fires.

"They're going to wait for the wind to subside to gain perimeter control," said Denise Hoover at the U.S. Forest Service communications center. "They're going try to keep it contained on the top of the hill."

San Bernardino County's Office of Emergency Services issued a mandatory evacuation order Tuesday afternoon for all mountain communities west of Snow Valley, which covers about half of the San Bernardino Mountains.

The Mountain Community Hospital at Lake Arrowhead was evacuated.

Cedar Pines Park and Valley of Enchantment are under voluntary evacuation.

During a visit to the mountain communities at noon to survey damage from the two fires, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said the fires were some of the biggest he has ever seen.

He was accompanied by Assemblyman Anthony Adams, R-Hesperia, state Sen. Bob Dutton, R-Rancho Cucamonga, and several members of the board of supervisors.

Standing in front of the Mary Putnam Henck Intermediate School near the Grass Valley Fire where firefighters have a command post, the governor said that about 15,000 people have left the mountains so far.

Schwarzenegger said that California has the most experienced, best-trained firefighters in the world, and air tankers are ready to drop water on the fires.

Hot, dry winds also continued to blow the fires out of control, and many home owners, fire crews and officials near the flames could not even see what had been lost.

A red-flag warning for strong Santa Ana winds and low humidity will remain in effect until 3 p.m. todayWednesday, according to the National Weather Service office in San Diego.

Fire officials tried to send out damage assessment teams to Green Valley Lake at 5 a.m. Tuesday, but fire conditions forced them to turn around.

"We attempted to get back in this morning, but couldn't because of fire on both sides of the road and heavy smoke," U.S. Forest Service spokesman John Miller said. "We don't know the condition of Green Valley Lake."

The Office of Emergency Services planned its own tally of the damage, but was unable to do so because of dangerous conditions, said Hoover at the communications center.

"We can't even get in on (Highways) 18 and 330 to do an assessment, and we have some major damage," Caltrans spokeswoman Terri Kasinga said.

The Slide Fire jumped below Highway 330 on Tuesday, said Dan Wurl, deputy chief of the San Bernardino Fire Department, and that prompted officials to issue a voluntary evacuation for Highland from north of Highland Avenue and east of Highway 330.

Burned areas that look out over a small lake near the Lake Arrowhead golf course were eerily empty of residents Tuesday, and the hiss and flames of burning fuel came from broken pipes near several freestanding chimneys.

The Grass Valley Fire reduced a row of eight homes in one spot on Brentwood Drive to cinders, leaving a crumpled car where a garage used to be and next to it, a bathtub.