Lighting storm touches off several small fires in Revelstoke region

A lightning storm on the night of July 31 and Aug. 1 has set off several small fires in the Revelstoke area.

The fire season is growing rapidly in many parts of the world. In this file photo a forest firefighter works on hot spots. Photo: B.C. Wildfire Service file photo

The lightning storm overnight on July 31 and Aug. 1 touched off several fires in the Revelstoke area, most of which were listed on the morning of Aug. 1 as small in size.

The Montana Bowl fire near the popular skiing location on Mount Mackenzie at Revelstoke Mountain Resort is listed as 0.04 hectares in size.

Some Revelstoke residents noticed a lightning strike on Mount Begbie in the evening on July 31. The ensuing fire is estimated at 0.01 hectares.

A strike near Three Valley Gap on July 31 started a small fire also listed at 0.01 hectares in size.

Further to the south of Revelstoke, the Fosthall fire on the west side of the Upper Arrow Lake is listed at 1.0 hectare. It was discovered on July 31.

The storm also set off a cluster of seven small fires in the Goldstream River and French Creek area, which sees significant forestry activity.

One fire near Goldstream is listed at 0.6 hectares. One in the Norman Woods area is 0.01 hectares. The French Creek fire is 0.01 hectares. There is a cluster of four small fires in the mountain adjacent to Highway 23 North at French Creek. All are listed at under a hectare.

Later in the morning of Aug. 1, the BC Wildfire Service added several more small fires in the area to the map. The Mount Mackenzie Backside fire on Mount Mackenzie is listed at 0.01 hectares, two fires on the west side of Lake Revelstoke called Frisby Ridge and Frisby Ridge #2 are at 0.1 and 0.3 hectares each. Further north from town, the Keystone Peak fire is also small at 0.01 hectares.

The fire size ratings are likely to change as crews assess the situation on Aug. 1. For the latest, check the BC Wildfire Service’s active fires map here.

Parks Canada, which manages wildfires separately from the provincial system, is managing several fires in the local parks.

Lightning strikes from a passing storm system on July 17  and 20 resulted in multiple fire starts in Mount Revelstoke National Park. Parks Canada management staff are monitoring and managing the Clachnacudainn East wildfire which is currently about 18 hectares; the Clachnacudainn West wildfire has been contained at about 4.5 hectares in size. The Woolsey Creek wildfire is less than one hectare. The wildfire near Miller Lake has been extinguished.  

The B.C. Wildfire Service’s fire danger rating map for the province as of July 31, 2018. Image: BC Wildfire Service

Currently, the fire danger rating at the forest fire service’s Revelstoke weather station is currently listed at extreme. The fire danger rating in the Southeast Fire Centre ranges from extreme danger to high danger, with a couple very small pockets of moderate danger.

There is a campfire ban in effect in the Southeast Fire Centre, and one in the City of Revelstoke. There is no campfire ban in Mount Revelstoke and Glacier National Park, although campfires are restricted to designated campsites.