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Smoke from the Chuweah Creek Fire on July 14.

Updated, 10:45 a.m. Monday

NESPELEM — All evacuation levels at the Chuweah Creek Fire in Nespelem have been removed.

The towns of Nespelem and Keller, as well as several surrounding areas, were under varying evacuation levels since a lightning strike started the fire July 12. On Monday, Level 1 notices — be aware — were lifted, according to a news release from Northwest Incident Management Team 12.

The fire is estimated at 36,820 acres and 55% contained.

Crews on Sunday worked to strengthen the eastern perimeter of the fire and held the fire on Keller Butte Road, the release said.

Buffalo Lake Road between Manila and Cache Creek Road remains closed.

Fourteen structures were damaged or destroyed the first night of the fire, including five homes and nine outbuildings, fire spokesman Roland Emetaz said Saturday.

12:45 p.m. Saturday

NESPELEM — The Chuweah Creek Fire has shown little growth this week and is estimated to be 50% contained.

The fire in Nespelem was believed to be 36,820 acres in size on Saturday — only 130 more than the official estimate Wednesday, according to fire spokesman Roland Emetaz.

“Things are looking pretty good,” Emetaz said. He noted that crews have built a containment line around the fire.

The fire was started July 12 by a lightning strike in southeastern Okanogan County.

There was confusion earlier this week about the number of structures burned but a new tally by the Nespelem Fire Department shows five homes and nine outbuildings were destroyed or damaged, Emetaz said.

There are no current Level 3 or 2 evacuation notices — leave now, be ready to leave — but several areas are under Level 1 notices — be aware.

Level 1 areas are: the towns of Nespelem and Keller, Buffalo Lake and McGinnis Lake communities, the San Poil Valley/Highway 21 corridor from South Nanamkin to the Keller Ferry; Owhi Flats and east of Owhi Lake and homes along Cache Creek Road.

Road closures include Cache Creek Road, Buffalo Lake Road between Manila and Cache Creek Road, and Cache Creek Cutoff Road.

5:30 p.m. Wednesday

NESPELEM — The Chuweah Creek Fire in Nespelem is estimated to be 40% contained.

The lightning-caused fire has grown to 36,690 acres and straddles the border of Okanogan and Ferry counties.

Officials initially reported 14 structures were burned the first night of the fire, which started July 12, but that may have been inaccurate.

Fire spokesman Roland Emetaz said authorities are still investigating the number of buildings lost but more recent findings show 11 structures burned, including outbuildings.

The fire was first reported July 12 outside Nespelem in southeastern Okanogan County.

There are no current Level 3 or 2 evacuation notices — leave now, be ready to leave — but several areas are under Level 1 notices — be aware.

Level 1 areas are: the towns of Nespelem and Keller, Buffalo Lake and McGinnis Lake communities, the San Poil Valley/Highway 21 corridor from South Nanamkin to the Keller Ferry; Owhi Flats and east of Owhi Lake and homes along Cache Creek Road.

Pete O’Cain: (509) 664-7152

ocain@wenatcheeworld.com or

on Twitter@peterocain