ELY - Cooler temperatures and a day-long cloud cover helped fire crews gain ground Sunday on the only major wildland fire still burning in Nevada.
The 7,450-acre Cherry fire 70 miles north of here was 70 percent contained despite steep, rocky terrain and rolling debris. Full containment was expected by Tuesday.
Nearly 500 firefighters and six helicopters were battling the blaze, which was triggered July 11 by lightning. Some crews were at the end of their tours of duty and were being allowed to go home.
The fire is in such a remote area that most of the crews were forced to camp out at the scene rather than returning to their base camps. Food and water are being flown in to them.
With drought conditions reaching extreme levels in many locations across northern Nevada, federal officials have banned campfires and smoking outside of vehicles across more than 8 million acres, effective as of Friday.
The Forest Service implemented campfire fire restrictions as of Monday for all national forest lands below 7,000 feet that are outside of developed recreation sites within the boundaries of the Carson Ranger District.
The directive covers Carson City and Washoe, Douglas, Storey, Lyon, Churchill and Mineral counties in Nevada and Alpine County in California.