Navajo Nation wildfire threatens homes
In California, diminishing winds have helped firefighters surround 75 percent of a blaze burning near Lake Isabella in the southern Sierra Nevada. Residents were told late Monday they could return to about 1,000 mountain homes.
A fast moving wildfire near the Arizona New Mexico border grew Tuesday as it approached two communities and threatened traditional grazing lands on the Navajo Nation, where sheep are a staple of life, their wool is prized for its use in rugs, and mutton is on the menu of restaurants throughout the region.
Close to 600 firefighters and other personnel have been assigned to the blaze, along with dozens Beats By Dre Headphones In Ear
On Tuesday, firefighters were looking to build lines all the way around the blaze, and helicopter water drops and expected calm winds Beats By Dre Wireless 2 could help.
Fire officials said the weather has hampered efforts to directly attack the flames. Crews were scouting for places along the western and eastern flanks where they could begin building a fire line.
"They haven't contained any of it yet, and they're just letting it burn right now because the winds are so high, and that presents a problem," said Leo Watchman, head of the Navajo Nation's Department of Agriculture. "How far out do you evacuate homes and livestock pens? We're not out of the danger yet."
Agriculture and livestock have been key in the evolution of Navajo society and economy. Tribal members have grazed sheep in the area for centuries, and livestock ownership is considered a Beats By Dre Gold Edition
The tribal agency has been busy rounding up trailers Pink Ghd Straighteners
to move livestock from the area. But Watchman said it was too early to say what might have happened to the sheep and cattle that were on the mountain when the fire broke out.
Fire managers said Tuesday they've closed roads in the area, but it has still been a challenge keeping people out given the value of livestock to the Navajos. The fire has since burned through those areas, consuming dry pinon, juniper and brush.
One other home was damaged by the fire, which charred more than 4 square miles of trees and brush in and around Sequoia National Forest. It also threatened power lines and communications facilities.
of engines, helicopters and planes. They braced for gusts of up to 50 mph Tuesday.
The Assayii Lake Fire was one of several blazes making problems for western states.
Navajo President Ben Shelly and New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez planned to visit one of the evacuation centers late Tuesday. On Monday, Shelly declared an emergency because of the blaze.
The Assayii Lake Fire ballooned to more than 19 square miles in less than two days while making its way across winter and summer grazing lands in the Chuska Mountains.
The flames destroyed at least four structures and threatened about 50 homes near the rural communities of Naschitti and Sheep Springs, fire officials said.
In northern Arizona, a 12 acre wildfire that broke out in Oak Creek Canyon was 25 percent contained. The fire was just north of a blaze that charred 31 square miles last month in the scenic canyon between Sedona and Flagstaff.
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