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Cajete Fire mostly contained, residents return home

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Containment of the Cajete Fire reached 80 percent Sunday and officials say residents displaced by the blaze have returned home.

N.M. 4, the road through Jemez Springs into the Jemez Mountains, reopened Sunday, though the Forest Service warned that fire equipment would be using the roadway and smoke could reduce visibility.

Since its start Thursday afternoon, the Cajete Fire has charred 1,400 acres of National Forest land, but it saw minimal growth overnight Saturday. On Sunday, the 424 people still on scene were monitoring existing containment line and working to establish a new containment line on the fire’s southern edge. Efforts to fight the human caused fire have to date cost $1.4 million, according to the National Interagency Fire Center. 

Forest Service officials said an abandoned campfire is to blame for the fire and on Saturday, the Santa Fe National Forest implemented stage 1 fire restrictions in the area.

Meanwhile, 246 people are fighting the Bonita Wildfire, which continues to burn near El Rito, according to the Forest Service. The lightning-caused fire which broke out June 3 has blackened 5,700 acres and is 25 percent contained. Officials expect that fire to be fully contained by July 15.