Firefighters contained the Lick Fire in Henry W. Coe State Park at 7 a.m. today, Cal-Fire spokesman Henry DeKruyff said.

The blaze, which began on Labor Day when a fire in an illegal burn barrel got out of control, charred 47,760 acres - making it one of the largest fires in Santa Clara County history. Most of the land burned is in back country of the state's second largest park, but the blaze also consumed private property.

Fire crews will remain on site through the weekend, DeKruyff said. They'll work on strengthening firebreaks made to control the blaze. Crews will also repair narrow dirt roads that were torn up by fire engines as firefighters made their way down steep canyons to battle the blaze.

About half of the firefighters working the fire have been released, DeKruyff said. About 940 will remain at the base camp in Gilroy through the weekend.

On Monday firefighters built a firebreak on the last troublesome two-mile stretch of the Lick Fire.

Cal Fire officials said last week that the person responsible for starting the blaze, when flames escaped a barrel being used to burn debris, has stepped forward.

On Monday, Cal Fire referred calls to the district attorney's office.

So far, the cost of fighting the fire has climbed to $9.3 million.

That price tag is likely to mount further, however, as several fire crews will stay at the site for the next two weeks, mopping up as helicopters drop water on remaining hot spots.



don't want this thing coming back to life," Cal Fire spokesman Chris Morgan said.

Contact Leslie Griffy at or (408) 920-5945.