Wildfire forces Navajo families to flee

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Wildfire forces Navajo families to flee
This image provided by Inci Web shows a plume of smoke in the Chuska Mountains near Naschitti, N.M. on Sunday, June 15, 2014. Residents of a Navajo community near the New Mexico-Arizona border prepared for evacuations Monday as strong winds fanned the flames of a wildfire burning in the Chuska Mountains. Fire officials were conducting reconnaissance missions to get a better handle on the fire's size, but Navajo Nation officials said more than 3 square miles have been charred since the fire was first reported Friday. (AP Photo/Inciweb)
Support Navajo as they battle the Asaayi wildfire https://t.co/DxwvZFA1wQ Update: DAY 6 http://t.co/17zAF6qSwj http://t.co/ZwkXJNomRT
Heat, wind hamper efforts to corral Navajo fire http://t.co/iND032Ct2P | http://t.co/FlNR6WJUGT
Fire on Navajo Nation Grounds Near New Mexico-Arizona Border Grows Rapidly http://t.co/ikdIb6pcx9 #NationalNews http://t.co/56xEkk0kPm
#AssayiiLakeFire update: Crews battling Navajo fire brace for more wind http://t.co/1ZVDs6mvcB #abc15 http://t.co/YMSrtFSC5A
Assayi Fire: Navajo Nation declares state of emergency | http://t.co/FexgxjXIx5 #NMFire http://t.co/a7BbyLEJ4P
Our thoughts and prayers go to the Navajo Nation and the beautiful burning Chuska Mountains. http://t.co/6dJAOsGRhP http://t.co/GVFOq7JNcT
Folks in Naschitti on the Navajo Nation north of Gallup preparing to evacuate. Assayii Fire burns 11,000 acres. @KOB4 http://t.co/SFtfTVJf8O
Pray for Navajo Nation as they fight a fierce fire http://t.co/EnO3O1XRvU
Current fire data from the USFS shows extent of Aasayi Fire back home in Dinetah. Be careful all my Navajo Peeps. http://t.co/GMihfBUbfy
Smoke from the Lake Asááyi fire on the #Navajo nation. So far over 2,000 acres have been burned. http://t.co/UuFuTHM0XN
BREAKING: #Navajo Nation Schools Evacuated. #Fire Storm rips through Chuska Mountain. http://t.co/DkfnXgJ8Qe http://t.co/fQpMvmXNsk
Google Earth image of Navajo Nation, Asaayi Lake fire perimeters from June 14 and today. #nmfire http://t.co/D9kaNyVKhY
@12News terrible fire on Navajo Nation, high winds too. :( http://t.co/wB78eWQOev
Heartbreaking... 😢... #fire #chuskamountains #memories #sad #wildfire #Navajo #rez http://t.co/U1uXtAiPjW
Forest fire near Navajo its moving fast. http://t.co/AgchV5cAzl
Fire on the Navajo Nation NW of Tohatchi in the Chuska Mountains. Courtesy David McLaughlin Sr. #nmwx #nmfire http://t.co/iHwXhSakmF
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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) -- Firefighters have made significant strides in a wildfire that has consumed more than 21 square miles of forest and grazing land on the Navajo Nation.

Fire officials say crews were able to contain 20 percent of the Assayii (UH'-say-eye) Lake Fire by Thursday night thanks to less windy weather.

Crews took advantage of light winds to mobilize air drops of water and fire retardant.

Officials say the fire was also slowed by reduced vegetation.

The blaze has destroyed at least five structures and 50 homes are still threatened.

Authorities say the human-caused fire has forced some families to evacuate their sheep camps in the Chuska Mountains, just east of the Arizona-New Mexico border.

Firefighters say they plan to keep the fire from burning southward by continuing to remove vegetation.

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Wildfire forces Navajo families to flee
SAN CLEMENTE, CA - MAY 16: People on Trestles beach watch Erickson air crane firefighting helicopters suck water from a lagoon to fight the Talega Fire on nearby Camp Pendleton as a surfer arrives to Tressles beach on May 16, 2014 near San Clemente, California. The Talega Fire, which began this morning, is one of three large wildfires on Camp Pendleton that have scorched more than 22,000 acres. Firefighters have been battling 11 wildfires in San Diego County this week, including the fires on the Marine base. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
Smoke plumes rise behind the Marine Corps Camp Pendleton entrance Friday, May 16, 2014, in Oceanside, Calif. San Diego County officials said Friday five wildfires have been 100 percent contained. Still, crews were focusing efforts on two large fires — one in the city of San Marcos and two blazes at the Marine Corps' Camp Pendleton. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
Marines move military vehicles near the entrance to Marine Corps Camp Pendleton in front of smoke plumes from the Las Pulgas wildfire burning on base Friday, May 16, 2014, in Oceanside, Calif. San Diego County officials said Friday five wildfires have been 100 percent contained. Still, crews were focusing efforts on two large fires — one in the city of San Marcos and two blazes at the Marine Corps' Camp Pendleton. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
Cars leave the Marine Corps Camp Pendleton base during a partial evacuation due to wildfires Friday, May 16, 2014, in Oceanside, Calif. San Diego County officials said Friday five wildfires have been 100 percent contained. Still, crews were focusing efforts on two large fires — one in the city of San Marcos and two blazes at the Marine Corps' Camp Pendleton. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
People look over a canyon ravaged by wildfire Friday, May 16, 2014, in Carlsbad, Calif. Some evacuation orders were lifted early Friday in an area near the fiercest of several wildfires in San Diego County, as crews building containment lines around the blazes hoped cooler temperatures will help them make further progress. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
Chase and Brittany Boslet take pictures of smoke from the Las Pulgas fire burning on the Marine Corps Camp Pendleton base Friday, May 16, 2014, from a highway rest area near Oceanside, Calif. San Diego County officials said Friday five wildfires have been 100 percent contained. Still, crews were focusing efforts on two large fires — one in the city of San Marcos and two blazes at the Marine Corps' Camp Pendleton. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
Houses sit untouched above a canyon ravaged by wildfire Friday, May 16, 2014, in Carlsbad, Calif. Some evacuation orders were lifted early Friday in an area near the fiercest of several wildfires in San Diego County, as crews building containment lines around the blazes hoped cooler temperatures will help them make further progress. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
Marines move military vehicles near the entrance to Marine Corps Camp Pendleton in front of smoke plumes from the Las Pulgas wildfire burning on base Friday, May 16, 2014, in Oceanside, Calif. San Diego County officials said Friday five wildfires have been 100 percent contained. Still, crews were focusing efforts on two large fires — one in the city of San Marcos and two blazes at the Marine Corps' Camp Pendleton. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
SAN MARCOS, CA - MAY 15: A house burns near an eagle sculpture at the Cocos fire on May 15, 2014 in San Marcos, California. Fire agencies throughout the state are scrambling to prepare for what is expected to be a dangerous year of wildfires in this third year of extreme drought in California. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
SAN MARCOS, CA - MAY 15: A house burns at the Cocos fire on May 15, 2014 in San Marcos, California. Fire agencies throughout the state are scrambling to prepare for what is expected to be a dangerous year of wildfires in this third year of extreme drought in California. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
SAN MARCOS, CA - MAY 15: Flames spread at the Cocos fire on May 15, 2014 in San Marcos, California. Fire agencies throughout the state are scrambling to prepare for what is expected to be a dangerous year of wildfires in this third year of extreme drought in California. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
SAN MARCOS, CA - MAY 15: A firefighter pulls a hose in position while battling the Cocos fire on May 15, 2014 in San Marcos, California. Fire agencies throughout the state are scrambling to prepare for what is expected to be a dangerous year of wildfires in this third year of extreme drought in California. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
SAN MARCOS, CA - MAY 15: Smoke rises as the southeast flank of the Cocos fire bears down on houses near Del Dios Highway on May 15, 2014 near San Marcos, California. Fire agencies throughout the state are scrambling to prepare for what is expected to be a dangerous year of wildfires in this third year of extreme drought in California. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
SAN MARCOS, CA - MAY 15: A house burns at the Cocos fire on May 15, 2014 in San Marcos, California. Fire agencies throughout the state are scrambling to prepare for what is expected to be a dangerous year of wildfires in this third year of extreme drought in California. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
SAN MARCOS, CA - MAY 15: Ranch equipment burns at the Cocos fire on May 15, 2014 in San Marcos, California. Fire agencies throughout the state are scrambling to prepare for what is expected to be a dangerous year of wildfires in this third year of extreme drought in California. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
SAN MARCOS, CA - MAY 15: A firefighter pulls a hose into position to battle the Cocos fire on May 15, 2014 in San Marcos, California. Fire agencies throughout the state are scrambling to prepare for what is expected to be a dangerous year of wildfires in this third year of extreme drought in California. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
SAN MARCOS, CA - MAY 15: A ranch smolders at the Cocos fire on May 15, 2014 in San Marcos, California. Fire agencies throughout the state are scrambling to prepare for what is expected to be a dangerous year of wildfires in this third year of extreme drought in California. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
Fire engulfs a structure during a wildfire Thursday, May 15, 2014, in Escondido, Calif. One of the nine fires burning in San Diego County suddenly flared Thursday afternoon and burned close to homes, trigging thousands of new evacuation orders. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
A fire climbs a hillside toward homes Thursday, May 15, 2014, in San Marcos, Calif. The San Diego County sheriff says nearly 13,000 new evacuation notices have been issued due to a wildfire. Sheriff Bill Gore said the notifications are due to a Thursday afternoon flare-up and erratic winds around the Southern California city of San Marcos. (AP Photo/Lenny Ignelzi)
A helicopter drops retardants while battling the Cocos fire Thursday, May 15, 2014, in San Marcos, Calif. The San Diego County sheriff says nearly 13,000 new evacuation notices have been issued due to a wildfire. Sheriff Bill Gore said the notifications are due to a Thursday afternoon flare-up and erratic winds around the Southern California city of San Marcos. (AP Photo/Lenny Ignelzi)
A mountain top home burns in the Cocos fire Thursday, May 15, 2014, in San Marcos, Calif. One of the nine fires burning in San Diego County suddenly flared Thursday afternoon and burned close to homes, trigging thousands of new evacuation orders. (AP Photo)
The skeleton shell of a home is engulfed in flames Thursday, May 15, 2014, in San Marcos, Calif. One of the nine fires burning in San Diego County suddenly flared Thursday afternoon and burned close to homes, trigging thousands of new evacuation orders. (AP Photo)
A brush fire roars up a hillside filling the air with smoke and embers Thursday, May 15, 2014, in San Marcos, Calif. Gusty winds failed to return Thursday morning in San Diego County wildfire areas and authorities said it was a window of opportunity to make further gains against flames that burned homes and drove tens of thousands from their homes. (AP Photo)
Firefighters take a break on a hillside after hours of work Thursday, May 15, 2014, in San Marcos, Calif. Gusty winds failed to return Thursday morning in San Diego County wildfire areas and authorities said it was a window of opportunity to make further gains against flames that burned homes and drove tens of thousands from their homes. (AP Photo)
A structure burns during a wildfire Thursday, May 15, 2014, in Escondido, Calif. One of the nine fires burning in San Diego County suddenly flared Thursday afternoon and burned close to homes, trigging thousands of new evacuation orders. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
A firefighter moves past a burning structure during a wildfire Thursday, May 15, 2014, in Escondido, Calif. One of the nine fires burning in San Diego County suddenly flared Thursday afternoon and burned close to homes, trigging thousands of new evacuation orders. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
A Riverside firefighter covers the face of another firefighter as they work a wildfire Thursday, May 15, 2014, in Escondido, Calif. One of the nine fires burning in San Diego County suddenly flared Thursday afternoon and burned close to homes, trigging thousands of new evacuation orders.(AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
A lone tree stands in the path of approaching flames as wild fire burns through a canyon Tuesday, May 13, 2014, in San Diego. Wildfires destroyed a home and forced the evacuation of several others Tuesday in California as a high-pressure system brought unseasonable heat and gusty winds to a parched state that should be in the middle of its rainy season. (AP Photo)
Flames grow as a wild fire burns out-of-control in the north county area of San Diego Tuesday, May 13, 2014, in San Diego. Wildfires destroyed a home and forced the evacuation of several others Tuesday in California as a high-pressure system brought unseasonable heat and gusty winds to a parched state that should be in the middle of its rainy season. (AP Photo)
Firefighters watch from a ridge as a helicopter drops retardant on a out-of- control wild fire Tuesday, May 13, 2014, in San Diego. (AP Photo)
SAN CLEMENTE, CA - MAY 16: A surfer at Trestles beach looks back at an Erickson air crane firefighting helicopter sucking water from a lagoon to fight the Talega Fire on nearby Camp Pendleton on May 16, 2014 near San Clemente, California. The Talega Fire, which began this morning, is one of three large wildfires on Camp Pendleton that have scorched more than 22,000 acres. Firefighters have been battling 11 wildfires in San Diego County this week, including the fires on the Marine base. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
SAN CLEMENTE, CA - MAY 16: A CH 53 Super Stallion Marine helicopter carries a bucket of water scooped from the ocean to fight the Talega Fire on nearby Camp Pendleton on May 16, 2014 near San Clemente, California. The Talega Fire, which began this morning, is one of three large wildfires on Camp Pendleton that have scorched more than 22,000 acres. Firefighters have been battling 11 wildfires in San Diego County this week, including the fires on the Marine base. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
SAN MARCOS, CA - MAY 15: A house burns at the Cocos fire on May 15, 2014 in San Marcos, California. Fire agencies throughout the state are scrambling to prepare for what is expected to be a dangerous year of wildfires in this third year of extreme drought in California. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
SAN MARCOS, CA - MAY 15: The grill of a pickup truck is left melted by the Cocos fire on May 15, 2014 in San Marcos, California. Fire agencies throughout the state are scrambling to prepare for what is expected to be a dangerous year of wildfires in this third year of extreme drought in California. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
SAN MARCOS, CA - MAY 15: A firefighter hoses flames at the Cocos fire on May 15, 2014 in San Marcos, California. Fire agencies throughout the state are scrambling to prepare for what is expected to be a dangerous year of wildfires in this third year of extreme drought in California. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
SAN MARCOS, CA - MAY 15: Ranch equipment burns at the Cocos fire on May 15, 2014 in San Marcos, California. Fire agencies throughout the state are scrambling to prepare for what is expected to be a dangerous year of wildfires in this third year of extreme drought in California. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
SAN MARCOS, CA - MAY 15: A house burns at the Cocos fire on May 15, 2014 in San Marcos, California. Fire agencies throughout the state are scrambling to prepare for what is expected to be a dangerous year of wildfires in this third year of extreme drought in California. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
A helicopter attacks a wild fire burning Tuesday, May 13, 2014, in San Diego. Wildfires destroyed a home and forced the evacuation of several others Tuesday in California as a high-pressure system brought unseasonable heat and gusty winds to a parched state that should be in the middle of its rainy season. (AP Photo)
A helicopter flies over burning vegetation as it nears homes Wednesday, May 14, 2014, in Carlsbad, Calif. More wildfires broke out Wednesday in San Diego County — threatening homes in Carlsbad and forcing the evacuations of military housing and an elementary school at Camp Pendleton — as Southern California is in the grip of a heat wave. (AP Photo)
A helicopter drops water on the grounds surrounding one of the luxury homes of the Fairbanks Ranch area where a wild fire threaten homes Tuesday, May 13, 2014, in San Diego. Wildfires pushed by gusty winds chewed through canyons parched by California’s drought, prompting evacuation orders for more than 20,000 homes on the outskirts of San Diego and another 1,200 homes and businesses in Santa Barbara County 250 miles to the north. (AP Photo)
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