Cooler, wetter weather puts a damper on Yukon wildfires

·2 min read
A 21,279-hectare wildfire burning about 43 kilometres southeast of Old Crow on Tuesday. Officials said Wednesday that no buildings or infrastructure were immediately at risk. (Yukon Protective Services - image credit)
A 21,279-hectare wildfire burning about 43 kilometres southeast of Old Crow on Tuesday. Officials said Wednesday that no buildings or infrastructure were immediately at risk. (Yukon Protective Services - image credit)

A change in weather has helped put a damper on Yukon's wildfires this week.

Cooler temperatures and a bit of rain have reduced the activity of some fires, including one that's been burning north of Lake Laberge, and another near the Robert Campbell Highway.

Earlier this month, the heat dome had pushed the fire danger rating to "extreme" for some areas of Yukon, and officials were bracing for some busy days. Now, the danger rating is considered "low" to "moderate" for most regions.

The Lake Laberge fire near Hootalinqua, a historic site where the Yukon and Teslin Rivers meet, has become less active in recent days. Last week, a wildfire warning was issued for the area and paddlers were advised to avoid travelling on the Teslin or the Thirty Mile section of the Yukon River.

On Wednesday, officials said the fire had passed Hootalinqua with no damage to any structures. The fire is now "less active" thanks to the weather, officials say, but it's still being monitored and paddlers are still advised to stay away.

Yukon Protective Services
Yukon Protective Services

The Tuchitua River fire near the Robert Campbell highway in southeast Yukon is also less active because of cooler, wetter weather. Last week, the highway was closed for a while as the fire burned nearby.

The highway is now open, but officials said on Wednesday that drivers should expect delays near the Nahanni Range Road. Drivers were being guided through the area by a pilot car this week.

Another fire is burning southeast of Old Crow, and fire crews were also expecting some relief from rain in the forecast there. The fire was burning about 43 kilometres from Old Crow on Wednesday, and officials said no buildings or infrastructure were immediately at risk.

Updates and fire danger ratings can be found on Yukon's online wildfire map, and drivers can monitor Yukon511 for any road closures.

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