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Some Of BWCA To Reopen As Firefighting Progresses

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO/AP) -- Portions of the Boundary Water Canoe Area Wilderness are set to reopen Saturday, according to the U.S. Forest Service.

The U.S. Forest Service's Superior National Forest office posted a video on Facebook Tuesday discussing the latest update on the northern Minnesota wildfires.

BWCAW in the Tofte, LaCroix, and Kawishiwi Ranger Districts will reopen to the public for overnight and day use, but portions of Whelp and John Ek fire will remain closed due to active fire.

Greenwood Fire
Greenwood Fire (credit: Kurt Rogers)

USFS says any permits that were issued for closed portions of the BWCAW will be cancelled and refunded through next Friday, September 10. Available permits will be reservable starting Thursday for entry beginning Saturday.

Authorities say that campfires will still not be allowed on any federal land.

Of the wildfires raging in northern Minnesota, the Greenwood Fire is still the largest, covering about 26,000 acres near the North Shore.

The fire in the Superior National Forest is 37% contained. Officials say 65 fires in the forest have burned about 45 square miles.

The closure had dealt a blow to tourists who spend months planning trips to Boundary Waters and to the outfitters and other businesses that serve them.

(© Copyright 2021 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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