The Elephant Hill fire passed along Highway 97 before burning where it is now. Photo taken July 23. Tara Sprickerhoff photo.

Increased resources on fire

Yesterday saw increased fire behaviour on the Elephant Hill fire on both the southern and northern flanks, says Fire Information Officer Claire Allen.

“That’s been due to the variable winds we’ve had and the topography that facilitates fire growth a little faster in those areas,” she says. “For the mot part it stayed fairly static within the perimeter.”

Plumes of smoke were visible from the Clinton area, as well as on the hill above Cache Creek.

Neither community is currently in danger, however. The fire has remained on the south side of the Bonaparte River near Clinton, and the BC Wildfire Service is working on completing hand guards to the southeast edge where bulldozers are unable to access.

‘It’s been a concern of residents in Clinton that it has crossed the Bonaparte and is coming towards Clinton but that is just not the case at this time,” says Allen.

“We had a lot of new firefighters come in yesterday. We’ve got 4 B.C. unit crews as well as a unit crew from Ontario and those are replacing some crews that have reached their 14 day operational limit, but by the mid part of this week we should have 400 total personnel assigned to this incident. With the extended fire behaviour, we are increasing our resources accordingly and we are reallocating them as need-be given the increased fire behaviour in different parts of the fire,” she says.

The service also ran an infrared scan throughout Division A (near Ashcroft) as well as the Loon Lake area to determine where remaining hotpots were within those areas.

“We can send crews to extinguish remaining heat that may not be as easily visible from the ground,” says Allen.

She says fire sometimes smolders in root systems or underground in the dust layer.

During the next few days, the fire service is looking into conducting controlled burns to remove fuel from the fire’s path.

“That really helps maintain the fire’s growth and limit it by removing excess fuel. It helps us control the fire and if there is nothing for the fire to consume then the fire is going to die.”

Until now, the weather has not been conducive to conducting those burns.

“Folks in the area may see increased smoke and some of that will still be from active parts of the wildfire and some of that will be from our crews conducting controlled ignitions as is possible,” says Allen.

“We have ample resources to monitor the situation as well as aviation support for bucketing and surveillance.”

Related: Elephant Hill fire perimeter mapped at 61,499 hectares.

Just Posted

UPDATE: Rockslide keeps Coquihalla northbound lane closed

Highway 5 is closed in one direction.

Rock slide closes Hwy. 1 south of Ashcroft until Friday afternoon

A rock slide Thursday afternoon near Spences Bridge closed the highway in both directions

‘Quite a few tears’ as quilts distributed to those affected by last summer’s fire

Local quilters leapt into action to provide quilts for Ashcroft Reserve and Boston Flats residents.

South Cariboo Kinsmen donate to local fire departments

Ashcroft and Cache Creek fire departments each receive $1,100 from Kinsmen annual Turkey Bingo.

NDIT ‘State of the North’ report highlights importance of small businesses

Median wages in Cariboo-Chilcotin/Lillooet lower than elsewhere, but housing relatively affordable.

REPLAY: B.C. this week in video

In case you missed it, here’s a look at replay-worthy highlights from across the province this week

Police fear fewer fentanyl imports don’t signal the end of the overdose crisis

RCMP say it’s just as likely that criminal are getting more clever

UPDATE: Two people die in ATV accident south of Campbell River

Third person survived attempt to cross a creek

Coal dust escaping rail cars spurs B.C. petition

Local governments are on board with Shuswap resident’s request for better control of escaping particulate

Lawyers slam ‘de facto expulsion’ of student guilty of sexual interference

Calgary student guilty of sexual assault of a minor allowed to finish semester

B.C. NDP set to restructure union bargaining

School trustees to regain control over employer group

New development in missing plane near Revelstoke

The family of Ashley Bourgeault believe they have found a new clue

$130K could get you on a dive to the Titanic

Hot summer ticket: $130K could get you on a dive to the Titanic off Newfoundland

UK’s Princess Eugenie, daughter of Prince Andrew, engaged

Princess Eugenie, the daughter of Prince Andrew and his ex-wife Sarah Ferguson, will marry Jack Brooksbank in Autumn 2018

Most Read