Wildfire burns Howard Hughes' ranch

July 2, 2010 at 3:56 PM
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LAS VEGAS, July 2 (UPI) -- A fire that charred 600 acres of land and destroyed 10 houses around Howard Hughes' former ranch in Nevada continued to burn Friday.

Around 100 firefighters worked to keep the blaze from spreading further, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported. No more buildings were at risk, officials said.

On Thursday, the flames ripped through the area around Moapa. A total of 15 structures were gutted, 10 of them homes. They included the main house for Hughes' Warm Springs Ranch.

Much of the area, which includes the springs that are the source of the Muddy River, now belongs to the Southern Nevada Water Authority. Moapa is 55 miles northeast of Las Vegas, not far from the Utah border.

Hughes, who became a recluse before his death in 1976, bought the property after spotting it during a 1968 test flight.

Another fire on Mount Charleston, a 12,000-foot peak about 35 miles northwest of Las Vegas, has been blamed on an illegal campfire. While the fire was relatively small Friday morning involving about 20 acres, two state highways and trails and campgrounds had been closed and many residents of Kyle Canyon evacuated.

About 250 firefighters were on the scene, including some from Utah and California.

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