A popular tourist stop along the Rogue River outside Merlin is gone after a fire leveled parts of the historic structure in a matter of hours.

Galice Resort was destroyed Tuesday in a fire that at one point had a Type 2 helicopter dump buckets of water from the Rogue River to tamp down the flames, according to Rural Metro Fire public information officer Jes Webb.

“The building is pretty much a total loss,” Webb said.

Some 35 personnel with four firefighting agencies — Rural Metro, Grants Pass Fire/Rescue, Rogue River Fire District and the Oregon Department of Forestry — battled the blaze that apparently began in the restaurant area of the resort and sparked a quickly contained wildfire in the area.

“We don’t know what started it,” Webb said.

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