Fire spreading toward Snake River; evacuation notices issued

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BAKER CITY, Ore. — An Eastern Oregon wildfire has grown to nearly 20 square miles.

The Dry Gulch fire is burning northwest of Richland. Crews are trying to stop it from spreading farther east into the rugged terrain near the Snake River.

No houses have burned, but evacuation notices issued Sunday by the Baker County Sheriff’s Office remain in effect. The Baker City Herald reports that 137 homes are under Level 3 evacuation, which means immediate evacuation is recommended.

Baker County Commissioner Mark Bennett said county and American Red Cross officials are prepared to set up an emergency shelter, if it becomes necessary.

Lighter winds and cooler temperatures helped firefighters Monday morning. Rain was possible late Monday and Tuesday morning.