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Fire near Mount Hood grows to 6,200 acres; another now 1,000 acres

by Ardeshir Tabrezian, The Oregonian (Portland, Ore.) |

A wildfire southeast of Mount Hood in Oregon has grown to about 6,200 acres since Friday night, and as of Monday morning crews had not been able to achieve any containment, according to fire officials.

The S-503 fire, on the north end of the Warm Springs Reservation, is about 2 miles east of Oregon 26 and seven miles northwest of Simnasho.

Crews, engines, dozers, water tenders and aerial support arrived in force Sunday, the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs said in a release. Firefighters were able to hold the north flank, which was a particular area of concern because residents of Pine Grove live just to the northeast of the S-503 perimeter.

Officials said the cause of the fire is unknown. Winds pushed the fire closer to Highway 26 Sunday.

About 300 firefighters were working Sunday to try to establish a new control line along both the northeast and southwest flanks of the fire. Officials said they were concerned the fire could put structures in the Pine Grove area at risk and that it could spread southwest as winds shift later Sunday.

Temperatures in the high 90s and low relative humidity will elevate fire weather concerns through Monday, officials said.

A second wildfire reported Saturday in southern Oregon had grown to 1,150 acres with 10 percent containment Monday morning. The fire still threatens 125 structures, according to a Sunday news release from Klamath County Emergency Management, Oregon Department of Forestry and BLM Lakeview District.

The Cutoff Fire is burning on Bureau of Land Management property about 6 miles north of Bonanza, a small town in Klamath County. The cause of the fire remains under investigation, officials said.