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Canyon Creek Fire in Eastern Oregon Grows To 69,000 Acres

August 23, 2015

The Canyon Creek Complex near John Day is still growing, but shelters are closing up and people are heading home after days away.

By Sunday morning, the blaze had grown to more than 69,000 acres. Fire officials say a lot of that was strategic – they’re burning land with controlled blazes to funnel the fire into an area that was burned three years ago.  

The Grant County Sheriff’s Office says 39 homes have been destroyed in the fire so far.  

Still, many evacuation alerts have been downgraded and people are returning to their homes after days away.

The American Red Cross is closing down its shelter near the blaze to head to the Grizzly Fire near the Oregon-Washington border.  

Smoke continues to fill the area. Friday, the wind blew smoke south away from town, but Saturday it is thick. Meanwhile, firefighters are still working to contain the Jerry’s Draw Fire about 12 miles away.

That fire has grown to 240 acres, but fire officials say it’s too far away to connect with the larger blaze near John Day.  

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The Canyon Creek Complex Fire in the Malheur National Forest near Canyon City, Oregon began on Aug. 12, 2015 and has consumed an estimated 37, 119 acres. The fire was caused by lightning.

U.S. Forest Service