Tinder-dry conditions, steep terrain and wind fueled a fire near Grayson that nearly tripled in acreage in an hour and sent out a large plume of smoke.
The blaze on the river close to Condit Avenue and Cox Road went from 20 acres when it was called in by an off-duty firefighter at 4:13 p.m. to 55 acres an hour later, said Steve Hall, fire chief for the West Stanislaus County Fire Protection District and the Patterson Fire Department.
The slope of the land down to the San Joaquin River made the fire especially difficult to fight, he said.
“There’s a lot of grasslands here,” he said. “The wind is pushing this fire.”
No one was injured and no structures were threatened, Hall said. He also had no cause.
The fire was contained around 6:45 p.m., with mop up underway and full containment expected late in the evening, he said.
Also responding to the blaze were the Westport Fire District, Woodland Avenue Fire District, Burbank-Paradise Fire Protection District and Modesto Fire Department.