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Crews Work To Contain Crow Peak Fire

June 25, 2012, 6:04 PM by Derek Olson

Crews Work To Contain Crow Peak Fire
SPEARFISH, SD -

Authorities say lightning sparked the Crow Peak fire Saturday night, and it might be a while before it's contained.

The fire is burning about three-miles southwest of Spearfish.  Right now, it's only five percent contained.  The fire is burning in a rugged area with no direct roads to lead crews to it.  But difficult access isn't the only reason why fire crews are worried.

The weather will also play a huge role in how quickly this fire is brought under control.  And for those battling the blaze, the forecast isn't looking good.

If you've ever hiked to the top of Crow Peak before, you know it's not a walk in the park.

"It's pretty steep, inaccessible terrain and it's been a challenge getting equipment in and getting crews in to where they need to be," incident commander Brian Daunt said.

About 40 firefighters from various agencies were fighting the fire on the west side of Crow Peak on Monday.  With temperatures well above 90 degrees, it hasn't been easy work.

Firefighters are hoping to get a good handle on the blaze because Tuesday, fire conditions are supposed to get even worse.

"Tomorrow, the wind is supposed to pick up and that can make it much more difficult for the guys out on the fire line," public information officer Bonnie Jones said.

"When the wind and the slope become aligned, going the same direction, it really wants to push the fire at a high rate of spread and it gives us some problems," Daunt said.

With fires in Colorado and Wyoming stretching firefighting resources thin, the hope is that the blaze doesn't grow any larger.

"If something does explode, then we will do what we can to put it out with the people that we have out there," Jones said.

"We want to make as much headway today as we can with the idea that tomorrow is going to be tough," Daunt said.

To track the progress of the Crow Peak Fire, along with other major wildfires in the country, you can get updated information from InciWeb, which posts the latest fire updates online.

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