Crews Make Progress on New Mexico Wildfire

Ute Park Fire has burned over 56 square miles



CIMARRON, N.M. (AP) — Crews battling a blaze burning in northeastern New Mexico are bracing for the return of hot and dry weather as they work to protect hundreds of homes.

Authorities said Monday that the Ute Park Fire has burned more than 56 square miles (146 square kilometers) since being sparked last Thursday. The cause is under investigation.

Evacuation orders remain in place for communities on the fire’s flanks. Authorities estimate 550 structures in the Cimarron area are threatened along with 219 residences around Ute Park.

No homes have burned, but some unoccupied buildings on the Boy Scouts’ Philmont Ranch were charred last week.

The fire saw some rain and higher humidity Sunday, but crews were prepared to respond to any new starts that result from lightning that came along with the weekend storm.

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