Firefighters from multiple rural detachments have brought a blaze east of Calgary under control.

The fire began as a small grass fire on a farm east of the city, but grew to envelope at least one building and threaten nearby homes.

According to Rocky View County, two homes were saved, but four outbuildings and some farm equipment were destroyed by the fire.

"The fire is now under control, and fire crews will remain on scene for another few hours dealing with hot spots," said spokesperson Amanda Bradley.

"At this time, the cause is unknown."

The fire was on Range Road 281 between Township Road 252 and Highway 564 near Balzac, according to RCMP.

Bradley said fire crews from Irricana, Langdon, Balzac, Springbank, Beiseker, Crossfield and Chestermere all responded to the scene, in an effort protect nearby homes.

Garth Rabel with the Airdrie Fire Department said one truck with two firefighters from the department was also sent to assist in battling the blaze.

Thick, black smoke from the blaze was easily visible from northeast Calgary and several people in the vicinity posted images online:

Range Road 281 between Township 252 and Highway 564 has reopened.

With files from Jennifer Lee