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13,740 acres burned in Antelope Island fire

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ANTELOPE ISLAND — Crews battling a wildfire on Antelope Island reached 35 percent containment Saturday evening after an estimated 13,740 acres burned. The fire consumed almost half of the state park's acreage.

More than 75 firefighting personnel were on scene Saturday, along with two single-engine planes and two helicopters. Crews worked to contain the fire primarily on the east side of the island near the roads. Forty more firefighters were expected to arrive Sunday.

The east road to Fielding Garr Ranch and all roads leading south to Buffalo Point and other features south of the visitor’s center are closed, according to a statement from the Utah Division of Forestry, Fire and State Lands.

No injuries have been reported.

No structures are threatened, though north winds pushed the fire within a half-mile of Fielding Garr Ranch Friday night into Saturday morning. The ranch is no longer in danger.

The fire was believed to have started Thursday night from a lightning strike but wasn't reported until 6 p.m. Friday. The fire has a large perimeter, Department of Natural Resources spokesman Shayne Ward said. It was burning both east and west about halfway up the mountain Saturday.

The fire was still several miles away from the Visitor's Center, Ward said.

There were no reports of bison, antelope or mule deer being injured. Ward said the wildlife is typically good about staying away from the fire.

"They are wild animals and they are very aware of their own environment and are well out of harms way," he said.

With wind blowing from the north Saturday, the fire created a lot of smoke that blanketed the Salt Lake Valley. Ward said although it's a very visual fire, he reminded residents to keep their drones out of the area.

"It's important that drones stay out of the airspace," he said.

The fire forced the cancellation of Pioneer Day weekend festivities that were scheduled there.

Peasant View fire

Fire crews were also getting the upper hand at other wildfires around the state Saturday.

In Pleasant View, Weber County, an 89-acre brush fire that damaged two homes was fully contained Saturday evening. Firefighters plan to continue monitoring the fire overnight.

No additional structures were threatened Saturday.

The fire started about 4:50 p.m. Friday in a field near 1100 West and 4300 North in Pleasant View. Twenty-five homes were evacuated.

Two homes were damaged. Fire burned the attic of one home. On another, heat from the fire melted or curled the vinyl porch and siding, said North View District fire Chief Dave Wade, but the interior of the home was not burned. The total damage estimate for both homes was expected to be hundreds of thousands of dollars, he said.

Two sheds were also burned and a barn partially burned.

The evacuation order was lifted about 9 p.m. Friday. No injuries were reported.

Investigators are still investigating to try and determine what started the fire.

Other Utah fires

The 500-acre Lower Ebbs Fire started at Ebbs Canyon near Scipio in Millard County Saturday afternoon. Two air tankers and a helicopter were working on containment Saturday. Large communication power lines are threatened half a mile to the north. Cause and time of the fire is under investigation.

• The Choke Cherry Fire, burning near Ibapah in Tooele County near Choke Cherry Canyon was 51 percent contained Saturday with no structures threatened. The fire has burned approximately 1,500 acres.

•The 27-acre Mercer Fire, on the west side of Utah Lake in the Lake Mountains, was expected to be fully contained by Saturday evening. Smoke from the fire covered parts of Eagle Mountain on Saturday morning. No structures were threatened.

•The Red Ledge Fire located 2 miles east of Currant Creek, on the Heber-Kamas Ranger District had burned an estimated 290 acres.

Contributing: Ashley Stilson