New Mexico wildfire advances in Rocky Mountains foothills

Spring Wildfires
Posted at 9:35 AM, May 11, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-11 11:35:37-04

The largest wildfire burning in the United States is heading toward mountain resort towns in northern New Mexico.

Fire officials say the fire is racing up steep slopes and along exposed ridge lines while tossing embers high into the air. Crews braced Wednesday for another day of strong winds that will fan the flames.

The blaze has charred more than 370 square miles and has destroyed homes throughout the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, which span northern New Mexico and southern Colorado.

More evacuations have been ordered on the fire's northern front.

Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham says there have been no reports of widespread damage to homes despite consecutive days of howling winds pushing the massive blaze across the tinder-dry landscape.

Some residents who were allowed to return home after weeks of being evacuated found their homes spared, others weren't as lucky.

The cost so far of fighting the blaze and another smaller fire has hit $65 million.

Two more days of high winds are expected before relief Friday.