Hot fall reignites fire season

There have been six new small lightning-caused wildfires in the Cariboo since Sept. 9, all holdovers that re-ignited with the warm weather.

  • Sep. 13, 2013 8:00 p.m.

There have been six new small lightning-caused wildfires in the Cariboo Fire Centre since Monday, Sept. 9, all holdovers that re-ignited with this week’s warm, dry weather.

There were three starts in the 100 Mile Zone (Loon Lake, 0.009 hectares; 30 kilometres west of Begbie Summit, 0.009 ha; Meadow Lake, 0.009 ha), one in the Williams Lake-Central Cariboo Zone (Riske Creek, 0.4 ha), one in the Horsefly/Likely-Central Cariboo Zone (Annette Lake, 0.009) and one in the Quesnel Zone (Barlow Creek, 0.009 ha).

Of those six wildfires, two (Riske Creek and Meadow Lake, both discovered Wednesday) were being actioned Thursday by Wildfire Management Branch Initial Attack crews.

Meanwhile, a WMB patrol confirmed that the five Modified Response wildfires burning in provincial parks within CFC boundaries have shown no growth.

There are two fires in Bowron Lake Provincial Park (Isaac Lake, 49 ha; Indianpoint Lake, 2.7 ha), two in Cariboo Mountains Provincial Park (Niagra River Valley, 43 ha; Summit Lake, 3 ha) and one in Ts’yl-os Provincial Park (Chilko Lake, 2 ha).

Modified Response status means the CFC/WMB is monitoring these wildfires but not supressing them, due to the ecological benefits of naturally occurring fires as well as their remote locations. The fires are subject to specific park management plans and suppression strategies.

These wildfires may be visible to park visitors and people in the area may also be able to smell smoke. The CFC/WMB is working in co-operation with BC Parks to manage these fires.

Fire is a natural process in the Cariboo-Chilcotin region’s environment. It helps maintain a healthy forest and a diversity of plant and animal habitat.

The fire danger rating for the CFC as of Thursday morning is split between moderate in the eastern half of the region and high in the western, with areas of extreme forecast for Anahim Lake, Baldface, Tautri, Middle Lake, Tatla Lake, Nemiah, Puntzi Mountain and Riske Creek in the Chilcotin and Churn Creek on the Fraser River.

There has been a total of 315 wildfires (248 lightning-caused, 67 person-caused) in the CFC this season, burning 2,498 ha. Breakdown by zone:

1.) Quesnel – 77 fires (71 lightning-caused, 6 person-caused, 117 hectares)

2.) Williams Lake-Central Cariboo – 73 (50 lx, 23 pc, 827 ha)

3.) 100 Mile House – 65 (53 lx, 12 pc, 48 ha)

4.) Horsefly/Likely-Central Cariboo – 55 (55 lx, 0 pc, 57 ha)

5.) Chilcotin – 45 (19 lx, 26 pc, 1,449 ha).