The Elephant Hill fire as seen from across the Sugar Shack in 70 Mile House on Aug. 18. Matt Wiesendahl photo.

The Elephant Hill fire as seen from across the Sugar Shack in 70 Mile House on Aug. 18. Matt Wiesendahl photo.

Aug. 20: Some precipitation on Elephant Hill fire

New restrictions on crown land

Things are slowly but surely looking like they’re going in our favour, says Noelle Kekula, Fire Information Officer for the Elephant Hill fire.

“I’m cautiously optimistic.”

The weather has been cooperative, says Kekula.

“There’s been some precipitation on the fire. I don’t know how much and in which sections but it is definitely cooler and higher humidity.”

“Yesterday on that east flank it was still trying to be quite active.”

It was nice that Loon Lake residents could go home following a meeting in Cache Creek this morning, she says.

While the BC Wildfire Service deals with danger trees on crown land, trees on private property are the responsibility of the residents, she says.

Related: Loon Lake community meeting tells returning residents what to expect

It’s still a bit early to talk about rehabilitation but they’re starting to think about it, says Kekula.

“We are coming up with plans and we always are talking about when we build guards and the control lines, we’re always talking about the rehab piece of it, but right now the fire is still active and out of control.”

The 25 per cent containment announced yesterday is in the areas where people have been able to go home.

“Along Highway 1 and Highway 97 that’s where. If we didn’t feel it was contained, we wouldn’t have let people go home.”

Additionally, as of noon today, there is an expanded area restriction in place for all crown land in the vicinity of the fire that will remain in place until Oct. 31 or until it’s rescinded. People will have to get written permission to travel through the area unless they are travelling to their principal residence (provided it’s not on evacuation order), accessing a secondary or recreational residence, using a highway, travelling in an official capacity, travelling for the purpose of suppressing the fire, engaging and in regular commercial activity or participating in a commercial activity that a person engaging in a regular commercial activity provides.

The restriction does not include private land or the garbage dump and transfer station according to the release.

 

Aug. 20: Some precipitation on Elephant Hill fire