Updated: 10:20 a.m.
Officials reported Wednesday the Spice Lake Fire in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness is now 100 percent contained — and a temporary closure order for part of the wilderness has been drastically reduced.
“Fire activity is smoldering in mixed timber and brush,” officials reported in an update Wednesday morning. “Fire crews continue to patrol the fire and mop up any remaining hot spots on the fire.”
The estimated 22-acre fire, about 10 miles southwest of the end of the Gunflint Trail, was first detected June 13. As of Wednesday morning, nine firefighters remained on-site, patrolling the area to help extinguish pockets of heat and smoke.
The team of wildland firefighters who initially responded to the scene transferred firefighting operations back to the Superior National Forest as of 6 a.m. Wednesday.
Soon after news that the fire was fully contained, Superior National Forest officials on Wednesday updated the temporary closure order for part of the BWCA The order that initially closed access to about 50 lakes now covers just six, along with associated campsites and portages:
Other parts of the wilderness and Gunflint Trail businesses remain open. A ban on open burning — including campfires — remains in effect for all of the BWCA, amid ongoing drought conditions.
Authorities said they believe the fire to be human-caused, but did not release further information on the investigation.
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