When volunteers from the fire department arrived at the monastery at 12:05 a.m., the main building was engulfed in flames. It burned to the ground, but other buildings on the monastery compound were not damaged.
Berryessa told reporters that a caretaker was the only person on the property at the time of the fire. He said the caretaker attempted to fight the blaze with a fire extinguisher, but the fire "just spread and got too big for him."
“By the time we got out there it was pretty much a total loss,” he said.
The Buddhist retreat that is typically a summertime weekend destination. It is about two miles west of Skykomish on the Old Cascade Highway. Two other residential buildings at the monastery were not damaged, Berryessa said.