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Firefighters Battle Blaze In North Cascades

About 150 firefighters labored Thursday to stop a fast-growing forest fire in the North Cascades, but were hampered by the rough terrain, the state Department of Natural Resources said.

The fire, first reported Wednesday afternoon, grew overnight to about 200 acres, DNR spokeswoman Sandy Rudnick said.

Several homeowners near the fire northeast of Marblemount have been asked to evacuate as a precaution, but no injuries and no property damage had been reported.

The cause of the fire was not immediately known. It was 10 to 15 acres when first spotted, and had grown to about 80 acres Wednesday night, Rudnick said.

Because of the steep hillsides, most of the fire fighting was being done from the air, with at least three helicopters and two air tankers dropping water and fire retardant on the flames.

Crews also planned to use explosives to create a trail around the blaze, Rudnick said.

Marblemount is along the North Cascades Highway, 77 miles northeast of Seattle.

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