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Firefighters prepare for gusty day at BWCA blaze

Firefighters prepare for gusty day at BWCA blaze Click to Enlarge Photo:

Sep 29, 2011 at 8:37 am

ELY, Minn. (AP) - Firefighters are bracing for a gusty day Thursday as they battle a wildfire in the Boundary Waters of northeastern Minnesota.

The National Weather Service forecasts northwest winds of 15 to 25 mph, gusting to around 35 mph. But there is a 60 percent chance of rain in the Ely area.

Fire information officer Larry Helmerick says the fire is 64 percent contained Wednesday night, and remains the same size, about 146 square miles.

Helmerick says 663 people are assigned to the fire, which was caused by lightning in mid-August.

The cost of fighting the fire has reached $12.1 million.

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