MEDFORD, Ore. -- The terrain at one of the forest fires in southwestern Oregon is so forbidding and the vegetation so dry that veteran firefighters expect it to grow fivefold and burn until autumn.

The area of the Big Windy fire centered 25 miles northwest of Grants Pass was reported Tuesday at more than 9,000 acres -- about 14 square miles.

The fire officials tell the Medford Mail Tribunetheir best-guess scenario is it will expand to nearly 50,000 acres by the fall -- if firefighters can keep it from jumping the lines they're trying to establish.

The Big Windy is a complex of three fires. Dan Thorpe is a state forester in charge of the southwest district who predicts: We're going to live with these fires until October 15th or later.

Latest Updates: Big Windy fire complex

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