Complete coverage of Texas wildfires

Palo Pinto Wildfire Now 50 Percent Contained

By Frank Heinz
|  Wednesday, Aug 15, 2012  |  Updated 11:37 AM CDT
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Wildfire Near Possum Kingdom Lake

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It could be several more days before firefighters get the 337 Fire in Palo Pinto totally contained.

Since Monday, more than 1,200 acres have burned northwest of Mineral Wells. 

While firefighters are making progress, the extreme heat is making it increasingly difficult for firefighters to make headway in battling the fire in the rough terrain.

By Thursday morning, firefighters had the fire 50 percent contained -- up from only 30 percent on Wednesday.

Crews battling the blaze have asked for additional heavy air tankers to assist in the effort.

This weekend, country singers Pat Green, Lee Ann Womack, Randy Rogers, Stoney Larue and Wade Bowen will play a benefit concert to raise funds for departments whose resources have been depleted by battling the massive fires that have struck the Palo Pinto County area this spring and summer.  The event is being held at a ranch in Graford and tickets are $100.  Get ticket info here.

Wednesday's Update

The Texas Forest Service responded to new large fires in four counties on the Fourth of July.

The fires in Palo Pinto, Presidio, Sutton and Knox counties have burned more than 2,600 acres and are all only partially contained.

The 337 Fire, the only one in North Texas, has burned more than 600 acres and is 30 percent contained. The TFS said the fire is burning in rough terrain five miles northwest of Mineral Wells.

Twenty homes were threatened by the 337 Fire, though none have been lost so far.

In mid-April, wildfires in the Possum Kingdom Lake complex fire that burned through parts of both Stephens and Palo Pinto counties burned tens of thousands of acres before being snuffed out April 29. Just last month, another 2,500 acres were burned in Palo Pinto county at Rhoads Ranch.

Large fires burning elsewhere in the state:

Brite Ranch Fire, Presidio County.
400 acres, 40 percent contained. A hot shot crew is in route to this fire burning in a remote area 30 miles west of Marfa.

Burnett Fire, Knox County.
1,100 acres, 40 percent contained. Four single-engine airtankers assisted in saving five homes on this fire 12 miles northeast of Benjamin.

Ward Ranch Fire, Sutton County.
500 acres, unknown containment. One residence was saved on this fire burning in grass and brush 20 miles south of Sonora.

Since the fire season began on Nov. 15, 2010, Texas Forest Service and area fire departments have responded to 13,731 fires that have burned 3,241,510 acres.

Across the state, 239 of Texas' 254 counties remain under a burn ban. See a map here.

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