By Shereen Siewert

Fire crews on Sunday battled a brush fire that broke out in Rib Mountain, one of two wildfires burning in Wisconsin and several that began over the weekend.

Sunday’s blaze was reported at about 12:30 p.m. on Thornapple Road, which is west of Rib Mountain State Park. Initial reports suggest the blaze involves between 1/2 and 3 acres of land. The fire is growing toward the west, away from nearby structures.

Crews are also battling a small blaze in northeastern Wisconsin. Fire danger statewide is increasing as snow cover recedes. In Marathon County, fire danger has shifted to “high,” according to the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.

Over the past two days alone 25 wildfires have broken out statewide, according to the DNR. Wildfires happen most frequently in the spring and fall when forest fuels are the driest and weather conditions — warm, dry, and windy — are most conducive for the spread of fire. 

Still, DNR officials say burning is allowed today in Marathon County from 6 p.m. to midnight for a covered barrel, debris pile less than 6 cubic feet in size, and grass or wooded area less than 1 acre. Any burning in excess of this requires a special permit through the local DNR Ranger Station.