ANCHORAGE, Alaska — Rain this past weekend helped fire crews as gain ground on the Hastings fire, northwest of Fairbanks, but officials aren't in control of the blaze just yet.
The Hastings fire is estimated at about 36 square miles and 18 percent contained.
Sunday night, the Interior got enough rain to cover the entire area of the blaze, but Tom Kurth, the fire management officer for Alaska Division of Forestry, said the rain was helpful, but not enough.
"With the dust that we have, that covers all the ground out there, that is that organic mat," Kurth said, "it can be 12 to 18 inches thick out there and that harbors a fire very well. It can smolder out there even when you get rain."