Lightning in the Cariboo Fire Centre overnight caused some new fire activity said fire information officer Natasha Broznitsky Sunday morning.
“The lightning was concentrated east of 100 Mile House and in the northwest corner of the fire centre,” Broznitsky told the Tribune. “We received lots of reports from people about seeing smoke at Canim Lake, Timothy Lake and northwest of Horse Lake this morning.”
The fire centre is now assessing and prioritizing the fires, she said, noting the expanded evacuation order for the Canim Lake area came about because that fire grew to 160 hectares in size.
It has yet to be determined exactly how much rain fell overnight, but it is good news that rain fell at all, Broznitsky said.
“Crews are reporting that the fire behaviour on the Canim Lake area fire is very quiet this morning. We are putting resources on the fires as we can.”
The highway remains closed to southbound traffic at the junction of Highway 97 and 24 to Chasm Road because of the wildfire, except for local traffic only.
Broznitsky said it is always tough when lightning comes through an area because if it is accompanied by rain, the rain can create plumes of smoke, making it difficulty to tell if smoke is from condensation or from fires.
“Today will be about watching and seeing what happens. If we get more rain it will be helpful.”
Prouton Lakes wildfire
Generally the fires around Williams Lake, east of the Fraser River have not changed, with the exception of the Prouton Lakes wildfire which did see a dramatic increase on Saturday, Brozntisky said.
It is now estimated at 768.9 hectares after the perimeter was verified Saturday afternoon.
A guard around the north end of the Prouton Lakes fire to the east and west has been secured and crews are hoping to do a burn out of the south of the fire should weather be favourable.
There has also been increased fire activity in the Quesnel Lake area wildfires, but again, Broznitsky said it is hoped the area will receive decent amounts of rain.
“I guess we will see what the rain gauge says at the end of the day.”
White Lake wildfire
Central Complex fire information officer Ali Martin said Sunday morning the White Lake wildfire both east and west of the Fraser River is being reported as one fire again whereas for a few weeks it was divided into two.
It is now estimated to be 13,211.8 ha in size.
“The rain will definitely help,” she said. “There was activity in a couple of areas on the north end at the contingency guard and in some spots on the first guard.”
Contrary to rumour, Martin confirmed the White Lake wildfire has not jumped the Fraser River again.
Martin said winds tested the guards around the north end of the fire Saturday, but ground crew with bucketing support stopped the fire from spreading further.
While smoke continues to come from inside the fire it is not threatening the guard, she added.
“The northeast area of the fire is the hottest area of the fire and crews are monitoring active spots.”
Spokin Lake wildfire
Sprinkler lines in the north west of the fire perimeter managed to halt fire activity for much of Saturday with crews continuing to patrol the west and south, Martin said, noting firefighters experienced erratic winds on the ground from all directions, and were ready to extinguish a small grass fire in the north along with assistance from the Miocene Volunteer Fire Department.
Fire activity in the south stayed within a second contingency line and was quickly dealt with by crews, she added.
As of Sunday afternoon it is raining and thundering in Williams Lake with winds westerly northwest at 19 kilometres an hour.
A chance of showers for Monday and Tuesday are also predicted with highs hovering around 16 and 17 degrees.
Below are some photographs taken Saturday, Aug. 12 of the aftermath from the Soda Creek fire, which continues to be monitored by the Cariboo Fire Centre.
Skip to the next and previous photo by typing j/k or ←/→.