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Planned burn on west side of Shovel Lake fire

A planned burn took place yesterday on the west side of the Shovel Lake wildfire, which is burning northwest of Endako and estimated at 31,500 hectares in size.

Smoke from these operations was highly visible in the Hanson Road area. The Cunningham Forest Service Road remains open. 

The head of the fire did not move yesterday but expanded in the southeast. The fire crossed the Trout Forest Service Road in a few locations. On the south flank of the fire are two geographical channels that could move the fire south to the north shore of Fraser Lake which is the primary reason for recommending an upgrade from an Evacuation Alert to an Order.

Owl Lake to Tatin Lake guard is holding.

On the northwest a planned ignition was conducted on this fire. It was not the cause of this increased fire behaviour or expansion, according to the BC Wildfire Service. 

The planned burn went well but winds shifted late in the day blowing in a Southeasterly direction. 

Yesterday was a calmer day on the Shovel Lake fire, as crews took the opportunity to prepare for a forecasted wind event tomorrow (the forecast has since been updated with less wind than expected). 

In the south, heavy equipment are completing a control line from Tatin Lake to the Trout FSR. Once complete, heavy equipment crews are planning to build a contingency line from the 13km on the Trout FSR to Oona Lake. In the south of the fire, along the Bomberger-Shovel Creek road, crews are setting up water delivery systems to support a planned aerial ignition when weather permits. 

On the southwest of the fire along the PNG pipeline, crews were challenged by wind in the late afternoon but were able to contain the fire through bucketing support by heavy helicopters. Control lines are being assessed for implementation ahead of the northern head of the fire. 

A planned burn was slated to be carried out yesterday but was called off due to unfavourable conditions, the forecast with winds from the southwest are looking more favourable for today (but again will only be conducted if safe to do so).

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