West Kootenay fires continue to burn: centre

Updated "Wildfires of Note" include Rossland, north of Syringa campground and a small fire near Fruitvale.

A wildfire near Rossland and another burning north of Syringa campground added to the BC Forest Service’s ‘Wildfire of Note’ list Wednesday afternoon.

The two lightning-caused blazes up the number of active fires in the Southeast Fire Centre to five – four in the West Kootenay and one in Creston.

The Big Sheep Creek and Deer Creek Park fires have been burning since Aug. 12 and Aug. 14 respectively, and these lightning-caused fires remain zero per cent contained.

The Big Sheep Creek fire, west of Rossland and 75 hectares, had air tankers assisting a 20-man ground crew Wednesday.

The fire wasn’t threatening any structures or communities at press time, but smoke was visible to residents of Sheep Creek and Rossland.

The remote Deer Creek Park fire was reported to be 560 hectares, but only visible via smoke in Castlegar and surrounding areas.

Further west, an aggressive fire continues to burn in the Paulson Pass. Suspected to be lightning-caused, the wildfire has grown to 260 hectares since Friday and remains zero per cent contained.

Two helicopters and six pieces of heavy equipment were on site alongside a 30-man crew, creating a fire guard Wednesday afternoon.

Highway 3 between Nancy Greene junction and Christina Lake was closed Tuesday evening around 7 p.m. when the fire spread close to the roadway.

The 37-kilometer (km) stretch was re-opened the following morning, but was limited to single-alternating traffic. Thick smoke and fallen debris cleared up by noon, and the highway was opened in both directions, with motorists warned of 20-minute delays.

A water tender was patrolling the highway and spraying a 10-metre buffer between the area of concern and the side of the highway, confirmed Fire Information Officer Karlie Shaughnessy, from the Southeast Fire Centre.

West of Rock Creek, about 4,300 hectares have been consumed by a fire sparked Aug. 13.

The larger estimated size on Wednesday was due to new growth on the southeast side of the valley, though the majority of the fire’s growth happened the initial day.

The Southeast Fire Centre reports 124 new fires since Aug. 12, most from recent lightning activity.

Locally, the most recent is a spot fire ignited  by lightning Tuesday, about six km east of Fruitvale. Initial attack crews were on site Wednesday dealing with the fire, estimated to be well under one hectare.

Just Posted

FILE – Perry Bellegarde, National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, takes part in an event on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, July 7, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Indigenous Peoples Day must be a ‘call to action’, says Assembly of First Nations chief

Discovery of children at Kamloops residential school site must lead to change, Perry Bellegarde says

Trees blown over by a windstorm in forest owned by Anderson Creek Timber. Photo: Anderson Creek Timber
Timber company logging near Nelson raises local concerns

Anderson Creek Timber owns 600 hectares of forest adjacent to the city

Keith Smyth, Kootenay Savings director at-large joins children from the Kids’ Care Centre at St. Michael’s Catholic School. Photo: Submitted
Kootenay Savings continues credit union’s tradition of giving

Funding totalling $48,250, is going to a wide array of Kootenay initiatives

From left: Karl Luedtke (West Arm Outdoors Club), Dale Williams (BCWF), Molly Teather (FLNORD), Gord Grunerud (West Arm Outdoors Club), Eugene Volokhov (Grand Prize Winner), Casey McKinnon and Lex Jones (Jones Boys Boats). Photo: Tammy White, Whitelight Photography
Balfour man lands big prize from angler incentive program

Eugene Volokhov of Balfour is now the proud owner of a sleek 18-foot Kingfisher boat

“I want to see the difference in the world, embrace it, celebrate it … ” Photo: David Cantelli/Unsplash
A new way to say ‘Hello’

“Inclusion, you see, is NOT about making us all the same.”

Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship during a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday, May 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada to welcome 45,000 refugees this year, says immigration minister

Canada plans to increase persons admitted from 23,500 to 45,000 and expedite permanent residency applications

The Sacred Hearts church on PIB land burned Monday morning. (Theresa May Jack/Facebook)
Two churches on First Nation land in South Okanagan burn to the ground

Sacred Hearts church on Penticton Indian Band land was reduced to rubble

Tl’etinqox-lead ceremony at the site of the former St. Joseph’s Mission in Williams Lake, B.C., June 18, 2021. (Angie Mindus photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
‘We are all one people’: Honouring residential school victims and survivors

Love, support and curiousity: Canadians urged to learn about residential schools and their impact

Indigenous rights and climate activists gathered outside Liberty Mutual’s office in Vancouver to pressure the insurance giant to stop covering Trans Mountain. (Photo by Andrew Larigakis)
Activists work to ensure Trans Mountain won’t get insurance

Global campaign urging insurance providers to stay away from Canadian pipeline project

In the first election with public money replacing corporate or union donations, B.C. Liberal leader Andrew Wilkinson, B.C. Greens leader Sonia Furstenau and B.C. NDP leader John Horgan take part in election debate at the University of B.C., Oct. 13, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS)
B.C. MLAs ponder 2022 ‘sunset’ of subsidy for political parties

NDP, B.C. Fed call for increase, B.C. Liberals have no comment

Investigators use a bucket to help recover human remains at a home burned in the Camp fire, Thursday, Nov. 15, 2018, in Magalia, Calif. Many of the missing in the deadly Northern California wildfire are elderly residents in Magalia, a forested town of about 11,000 north of the destroyed town of Paradise. (AP Photo/John Locher)
‘Forever War’ with fire has California battling forests instead

Five of the state’s largest-ever blazes seared California last year, as authorities tackle prevention

Tokyo 2020 President Seiko Hashimoto and IOC President Thomas Bach, on a screen, speak during a five=party online meeting at Harumi Island Triton Square Tower Y in Tokyo Monday, June 21, 2021. The Tokyo Olympics will allow some local fans to attend when the games open in just over a month, Tokyo organizing committee officials and the IOC said on Monday. (Rodrigo Reyes Marin/Pool Photo via AP)
Tokyo Olympics to allow Japanese fans only, with strict limits

Organizers set a limit of 50% capacity — up to a maximum of 10,000 fans

The border crossing into the United States is seen during the COVID-19 pandemic in Lacolle, Que. on February 12, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
VIDEO: Border quarantine to soon lift for fully vaccinated Canadians

Eligible travellers must still take multiple COVID-19 tests

Most Read