The Deer Creek fire

Fires still burn as hunting season begins

As hunting season begins, hunters are asked to stay out of wildfire areas.

The hunting season began on Tuesday, September 1, but the Southeast Fire Centre is asking hunters to stay away from any area near a wildfire.

Any bullets fired where there is wildfire activity could put firefighters at risk.

So far this season, 562 wildfires have burned 13,926 hectares in the Southeast Fire Centre. Of those, 488 were lightning-caused and 74 were started by people.

Big Sheep Creek—discovered Wednesday, August 12

The Big Sheep Creek fire, 10 km west of Rossland was 190 hectares and 85 per cent contained as of Tuesday morning. Thirteen firefighters and one helicopter were onsite.

A portion of the Seven Summits trail remains closed due to this fire. The trail is closed from where it intersects at the Old Cascade Highway to where it intersects with the top of the Red Mountain Resort.

Lynch Creek—Thursday, August 13

The fire 25 km north of Grand Forks in the Lynch Creek area was 1,966 hectares and 20 per cent contained as of Tuesday morning. Friday, the fire merged with another fire burning in Gladstone Provincial Park, increasing the size.

Tuesday, there were 45 firefighters onsite. Crews were working on containment on the south and west flanks.

Due to the fire, access to the Gladstone Forest Service Road is restricted to the public, beginning at the junction with Lynch Creek Forest Service Road.

Paulson Pass—discovered Thursday, August 13

As of Tuesday morning, the Paulson Pass fire was 95 per cent contained and estimated at 320 hectares. There were 10 firefighters onsite, with crews mopping-up on the western and northern flanks.

Rock Creek—discovered Thursday, August 13

The evacuation alert for the Rock Creek, Westbridge, and Christian Valley areas was lifted as of Monday at noon.

The fire west of Rock Creek was 4,417 hectares and 100 per cent contained as of Tuesday morning. There were 119 firefighters, two helicopters and two pieces of heavy equipment on site.

Crews continue to mop-up along the fireline perimeter. Sunday, a heat scan identified just over 40 hotspots and Monday crews were working to put them out. Residents in the area may continue to see helicopters flying overhead, performing more heat scans to identify any new hot spots.

The cause of the Rock Creek fire is still under investigation, but officials suspect the fire was caused by a person. Thirty homes and 15 additional structures were damaged or destroyed.

Deer Creek Park—discovered Friday, August 14

As of Tuesday morning, the Deer Creek fire, 30 km north of Castlegar was 1,100 hectares and 50 per cent contained. There were 30 firefighters and one helicopter on site.

Mount Midgley—discovered Friday, August 14

The fire on Mount Midgley, 13 km northwest of Creston, was 480 hectares and 100 per cent contained as of Tuesday morning. There were 27 firefighters on site mopping-up the perimeter.

Cherry Lake—discovered Tuesday, August 25

The lightning-caused fire 35 km southeast of Cranbrook was 1,250 hectares and 30 per cent contained as of Tuesday morning. Fifty-three firefighters, two helicopters, and six pieces of heavy equipment were onsite.

The fire has received 12-15mm of rain so far, which has helped suppress the flames.

There was a public access restriction for the Caven, Wickman, Larch, Bloom, Teepee and Teepee/Jim Creek Forest Service Road, but it has been lifted.