ELY  (AP) - A half-inch of rain over the next couple days is expected to keep a large forest fire from spreading in northeastern Minnesota.

Nearly 740 firefighters are working the blaze in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. Fire information officer Erin Heep said Tuesday firefighters are beginning to move into areas of the fire in the northeast and southwest that were previously unstaffed.

The firefighters come from 28 states.

Heep says the fire is 23 percent contained. With rain Tuesday and Wednesday, Heep says the fire, which has spread to 147 square miles, shouldn't gain much ground.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

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