Boundary Waters wildfire grows to more than 1,600 acres

A wildfire burning in the BWCA.
A wildfire burning in a remote section of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness has grown substantially since it was discovered Monday.
Courtesy of USDA Forest Service

Updated: 7:06 p.m.

Forest officials say a wildfire burning in a remote section of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness has grown to 1,635 acres.

The Behzik Fire was detected Monday afternoon in the Trout Lake unit of the Boundary Waters, about 15 miles northwest of Ely, Minn.

Officials believe the fire was started by lightning. By Monday evening, had grown to about 10 acres. Superior National Forest spokesperson Tim Engrav says it's burning through an area of mature red and white pines, with flames up to four feet high.

"It’s pretty much in the woods, in the middle of nowhere, not on any of the Boundary Waters travel zones or rivers or lakes at this time," Engrav said.

Aircraft were dropping water on the north edge of the fire Tuesday afternoon.

Conditions on the western side of the Boundary Waters are very dry right now, although rain is likely later in the week.

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