Labrador cabin-owners rebuilding after forest fires

Mike Parsons is rebuilding after fire destroyed his cabin in western Labrador.

People in western Labrador are starting to rebuild cabins that were destroyed by forest fires this summer.

More than 60 cabins were lost – about a third of them were in the Blueberry Hill area, just minutes from Wabush.

Most people, like Mike Parsons, are rebuilding on the same spot where the original structure they lost stood.

"Whether it be this year or next year, or a couple years...whenever they can afford to. You'll see it all built back up,“ he predicts.

The first challenge is clearing out the wreckage the fire left behind.

A lot of it is being brought to a pit near Wabush that's filling up with twisted metal and melted aluminum. Somewhere in the pile is what’s left of Parsons’s old snowmobile.

"[We lost] a sleigh, trailers...we really don't know what all is lost yet," says Parsons.

Crown land, where most Labrador cabins stand, is difficult to purchase.

It's a two-year process that doesn’t necessarily lead to a sale. Many people who’ve made the effort to get that land are determined to hang on to it.