Nearby blaze partly contained

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By David Giuliani

The Tecolote fire was 10 percent contained as of Tuesday morning, officials said.

The blaze, which started Friday night, has burned 700 acres. But the fire hasn’t struck any buildings, and no evacuations have been ordered.

“No structures are immediately threatened. We’ve had people talk to homeowners,” said Denise Ottaviano, a U.S. Forest Service spokeswoman.

The fire is on Bear Mountain, about 2.5 miles south of Gallinas Canyon. The blaze is raging on rugged terrain in the Santa Fe National Forest.

For much of the weekend, fire crews did little to combat the fire because of high winds. Sunday was the first day firefighters were able to make progress in combatting the blaze.

The cooler and more humid weather on Monday and Tuesday was better for firefighters. But officials said they were concerned about hotter, drier weather later in the week.  

The Forest Service is in charge of the firefighting effort, and it has drawn firefighters from as far away as Oregon and Wyoming. A base camp has been set up on the county fairgrounds on N.M. Highway 65 and the incident command center at West Las Vegas High School.

The Forest Service has been closing its recreation areas and picnic grounds in the area because of the fire. The agency said someone will be posted at forest boundaries to restrict access to the land, according to a press release.