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Northern Michigan wildfire grows to 2,300 acres, now 30% contained

Northern Michigan wildfire
Northern Michigan Wildfire
Posted at 10:20 PM, May 13, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-14 17:40:47-04


A bolt of lightning ignited a wildfire in Northern Michigan that grew substantially Friday afternoon.

The Michigan DNR says the Blue Lakes wildfire grew to 2,300 acres in size across Montmorency and Cheboygan counties before firefighters contained it at 30%.

We’re told Black River Ranch has been evacuated, as 12 structures are under threat.

The DNR reports a shed was destroyed in the fire, adding a private vehicle sustained damages.

A firefighter was reportedly treated for minor injuries.

“We are grateful to report no life-threatening injuries and no serious property damage, as everyone on the scene gives their best effort to suppress this fire,” says spokesperson Kerry Heckman. “Thank you to everyone who has followed reports and steered clear of this area.”

The lightning strike that caused the fire is believed to have stemmed from a thunderstorm on Wednesday, May 11.

The road closures below remain in effect, in addition to the area between 622 and Canada Creek Road at East Branch Road and Black River Road, the DNR tells us.

We’re told fire danger is still high in the Lower Peninsula and very high in the Upper Peninsula. Click here for fire safety tips.


The Michigan Department of Natural Resources says fire crews are working to contain a northern Michigan wildfire that has already burned thousands of acres.

The DNR says the Blue Lakes Fire started Friday afternoon around 12:30 p.m.

They say as of 9 p.m. Friday, it had already burned an estimated 2,000 acres in Montmorency and Cheboygan counties.

It also forced 13 people to evacuate from the Black River Ranch.

The DNR says, as of Friday night, the fire has not destroyed any structures.

“The fire is fueled by a mix of jack pine, mixed pine and grasses, with a very large smoke plume visible from miles away,” said DNR spokesperson, Kerry Heckman.

Crews had to shut down several roads as they work to put the fire out:

  • Blue Lakes Road to East Branch Road
  • Black River Road to Camp 30 Road
  • Clark Bridge Road to Black River Road
  • Blue Lakes Road to Meridian Line Road
  • The Black River between Blue Lakes Road and Clark Bridge Road

As of Friday night, investigators do not know what caused the wildfire.

RELATED: DO NOT BURN: Fire Weather Watch posted in Michigan

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