Wind fans the flames of Utah fire that has burned 13 homes

Smoke billows from a wildfire locally called Goodwin Fire, near Prescott, Ariz., Tuesday, June 27, 2017. More than 500 firefighters braced for windy conditions Tuesday as they continued to battle the northern Arizona wildfire that has burned 6.8 square miles (17.6 sq. kilometers) so far. (Les Stukenberg/The Daily Courier via AP)

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Utah firefighters braced Wednesday for more high winds as they try to slow a stubborn wildfire that has burned 13 homes and forced the evacuation of 1,500 people from a ski resort town.

Firefighters hope to put areas with intense blazes at the fire’s southern end so residents can return to homes in the town of Brian Head. Homes there have been evacuated since June 17 since authorities said the fire was started by someone using a torch tool to burn weeds on private land.

The fire is the largest in the nation at 78 square miles (201 square kilometers).

The blaze is one of several in the West. Crews in California were making gains against two new fires that spread quickly, and firefighters in Idaho battled five lightning-sparked wildfires burning in grass and brush.

In Arizona, a wildfire that has charred more than 28 square miles (72 square kilometers) burned and forced the evacuation of the town of Mayer, population about 1,400, and other areas as a precaution.

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