Ely wildfire 100 percent contained

Fire officials have declared a 175-acre wildfire that threatened the popular northeastern Minnesota tourist town of Ely to be completely contained. The containment effort got help from about 1.5 inches of rain that fell this weekend.
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Fire officials have declared a 175-acre wildfire that threatened the popular northeastern Minnesota tourist town of Ely to be completely contained. The containment effort got help from about 1.5 inches of rain that fell this weekend.

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Wildfire near Ely 60 percent contained

The wildfire sparked by a downed power line near Ely is 60 percent contained. Officials say emergency preparedness and a quick response was the key to the fire's containment. The blaze was reported at 1:40 p.m. Thursday, about 10 minutes after it started, and the first engine arrived three minutes later.

Ely escapes wildfire disaster

Fire crews and a wind switch combined to beat back a raging forest 216-acre fire Thursday that burned to the edge of popular tourist town Ely. Some nervous residents were briefly evacuated, but no injuries were reported and officials say no occupied homes were lost.

Fire scarred lush forested entry to Ely

Visitors to the popular tourist town of Ely will notice it does not look the same. Lush green forest was devastated in a blaze this week just south of the Boundary Waters gateway, and will take years to recover. The last mile of Highway 1 just south of town will lose much of the distinctive forest that has lined the road. The fire sparked Thursday was well under control late Friday.

Rain helps in wildfire battle near Ely

Overnight rain helped firefighters in Ely make significant progress toward extinguishing a wildfire that earlier had threatened the city. The Duluth News Tribune also said authorities opened Minnesota Highway 1 Sunday morning for the first time since the blaze began Thursday afternoon.

New estimates of precious metals near Ely could surpass $100 billion

A mining company exploring copper and nickel deposits southeast of Ely will update its estimate later this month. Twin Metals has drilled more than 400 holes as it puts together a picture of the deposits. One industry expert tells MPR it's already clear there's enough precious metal to keep mines busy for 60 years. The debate over whether to issue environmental permits is in the early stages, though, and any mines are still years away.