GOLDENDALE, Wash. - Fire spokespeople say about 180 homes are now threatened by a wildfire burning near Satus Pass in south-central Washington. Another wildfire that started Saturday was threatening 60 homes in Chelan County, and a third west of Soap Lake forced the closure of Highway 28.
The Mile Marker 28 fire near Goldendale has burned nearly 9,000 acres along the top of Satus Pass. Some 800 firefighters are working there.
Spokeswoman Janet Pearce in Olympia says firefighters Friday were still trying to build lines to contain the fire that broke out Monday. The flames were burning grass, brush and timber.
Most of Highway 97 between Goldendale and Toppenish including Satus Pass remained closed due to smoke and the danger of debris rolling off steep hillsides. That stretch of US 97 has been closed in both directions since Wednesday afternoon.
Pearce said the wildfire destroyed one structure. No homes, though, have been lost.
There is no word yet what caused the fire.
Meanwhile, the Colockum Tarps fire burning in Chelan county grew to an estimated 1,000 acres by Saturday afternoon. The fire was threatening 60 homes in Chelan County. Evacuations were ordered.
Two helicopters and an airplane were dropping water and fire retardant on the blaze. About 100 firefighters from Chelan and Douglas counties as well as the Washington Department of Natural Resources were sent to help fight the fire. No injuries were reported.
Chelan County Fire Chief Bill Neckels said high temperatures and 30 mph winds made the effort to fight this fire and protect homes and cabins in the area more difficult.
The cause of the Colockum Tarps fire was also unkown.
A third wildfire in Grant County forced police to close Highway 28 west of Soap Lake. The fire burned 50-100 acres by Saturday afternoon.