Click the photo on the right to view more images from the scene.
Though a massive wildfire in Wood County is now contained, firefighters are still in the area putting out small hotspots.
It began with a grass fire Wednesday in the Town of Sigel, near Wisconsin Rapids, and quickly spread over 102 acres into a nearby marsh.
Tuesday afternoon, three hotspots ignited in what normally is a wet, swampy area.
The extremely dry conditions have depleted the marsh of its moisture. Though everything above ground, like trees and brush, have already burned, now what's underneath is causing a problem.
Peat moss, which is deeply compacted, partially decomposed material is on fire.
It's what's causing hot spots to smolder and firefighters to monitor the area daily.
"It's constant," said Rudolph Fire Chief Tony Konkol said. "For the last seven days we've been here. We take the night off we come back here in the morning and it's started up again," he said.
It's been a challenge for firefighters, many of whom are volunteers.
"It's a lot more difficult with the peat fires like this," said Paul Holicek III, a volunteer firefighter. "It requires a lot more water so that kind of presents a challenge trying to get water back into the woods."
Peat is deeply compacted, partially decomposed organic material. Peat fires present different challenges than standard structure or wildfires.
The Department of Naturla Resources has stepped in with a low-ground vehicle that could get through the dense woods. They've also used thermal imaging equipment to locate and mark small fires beneath the surface.
Firefighters will continue to monitor the area until all fires are completely extinguished.
Fire danger is high in Central Wisconsin. The DNR is asking people to refrain from burning. Any fire that's started will spread quickly and be difficult to control.
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