Minnesota's largest wildfire in 3 years exploded overnight and continues to burn Monday

The fire nearly doubled in size overnight because of strong winds.
Author:
Publish date:

A wildfire burning in northwestern Minnesota exploded overnight and as of 11 a.m. Monday it had torched at least 4,000 acres of land.  

It's been called the "North County Road 7 Fire" and is burning in Roseau County near Juneberry Township, about 15 miles northwest of Greenbush.

"It's mostly in grass and brush so at this point we don't see any values or structures threatened," Christi Powers of the Minnesota Interagency Fire Center told BMTN.

Related:

– After 200-plus day streak, it'll finally be 80 again in Minnesota.

Sign up for our daily newsletters

The wildfire started Sunday during warm and dry conditions, and strong winds helped it grow rapidly from 2,300 acres to 4,000 acres overnight.

"We sent some aircraft, had some crews on it – probably 20-30 people on the fire last night," Powers said. "It seemed to be tamping down, but with the winds picking up to the west it's grown to about 4,000 acres."

Fire crews are working full throttle to keep things under control, using a heli-tanker, three single-engine air tankers and a helicopter to help drop thousands of gallons of water and fire retardant on the blaze. 

More air support is standing by in Bemidji, Brainerd, Hibbing, Grand Rapids, Ely, Princeton and Warroad. 

Powers tells BMTN that it's the largest wildfire in Minnesota in the last three years. 

Nearly 200 acres burned in St. Cloud

The dry and windy conditions helped fuel a smaller grass fire in the St. Cloud area on Sunday, and it took fire crews from multiple departments seven hours to put it out. 

The St. Cloud Fire Department tells BMTN that 167 acres were torched in an area west of Hwy. 10 near the St. Cloud prison. 

"The problem came when it got into the tree lines," Fire Chief Dean Wrobbel said. "Old trees, those type of fuels, cutting down trees – that's when it took forever. 

"It burned fast and was hard to keep up with," Wrobbel added. 

Burning restrictions are in place across much of Minnesota again Monday. 

burning_restrictions_large

Next Up

Sen. Julia Coleman

'No one's business': State senator calls out attack on her pregnancy

Sen. Julia Coleman represents Minnesota's District 47.

Willmar Police Department

'Errant bullet' goes through garage wall, kills Willmar man

The man was working in his garage when he was shot, witnesses said.

Screen Shot 2021-01-16 at 10.59.00 PM

Wild tie Kings with 2 seconds left, win in overtime

Another incredible finish for the Wild.

Screen Shot 2021-01-16 at 6.53.17 PM

Mike Lindell's MyPillow offering discounts using the code 'Qanon'

The Shakopee-based company is under the microscope because of the recent actions of its owner.

Surly Brewing

Facing aluminum can shortage, Surly unveils solution: 'Cantyhose'

The brewery came up with a creative way to repurpose unused cans.

Liam Robbins

Gophers stay perfect at home by crushing 7th-ranked Michigan

Liam Robbins and Marcus Carr were too much for the previously undefeated Wolverines.

police lights

Four teens arrested over robberies in Minneapolis

They teens were found in a vehicle that was taken during an earlier carjacking.

Boundary Waters/BWCA

All BWCA visitors will now have to watch three 'Leave No Trace' videos

Visitors left an "unacceptably high amount" of damage last year.

ambulance

Ten fatal overdoses in past 6 weeks reported in region of northern MN

Law enforcement agencies have issued a plea to the general public.

Related

Remembering the monster wildfires of Minnesota's history

Recent, large wildfires in Minnesota are nowhere near the size of these monsters.

Another large wildfire erupted in northern Minnesota on Tuesday

Warm temps with low humidity and strong winds were the fuel.

Here's how you can stay alert to fire danger conditions in Minnesota

Two homes burned down Monday as a result of burning grass and leaves.

Extreme wildfires possible across Minnesota again on Friday

A red flag warning has been issued for the northern two-thirds of the state.

Risk of explosive fires in Minnesota raised to 'critical'

The warm, dry air couple with strong winds are to blame.

Massive wildfire in northwest Minnesota finally contained

The blaze started Sunday under high danger fire conditions.

huge hail

List of where the largest hail fell in Minnesota on Monday

You can bet that insurance agents have been busy.