NE Minn. Forest Fire Now 70 Percent Contained

ELY, Minn. (AP) — Firefighters will be building, patrolling and mopping up along the fire lines as they gain ground against a forest fire in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area in northeastern Minnesota.

Fire officials said Sunday the Pagami Creek fire is now 70 percent contained. The forecast for Sunday called for temperatures in the lower 70s with winds out of the south at 4 to 7 mph with gusts to 11 mph.

About 580 firefighters are assigned to the fire, which has blackened about 145 square miles in and near the BWCA but has grown very little since it expanded rapidly in mid-September. It was sparked by a lightning strike about 14 miles east of Ely on Aug. 18.

A fresh incident management team will assume command Monday morning.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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