The Snowy Mountain fire is holding at about 11,000 hectares, thanks to cooler temperatures and rain. Photo courtesy BC Wildfire

Snowy Mountain wildfire holding size in southern B.C.

Calm night for major fires in the Similkameen Valley

A bit of rain and cooler temperatures yesterday and overnight are helping slow the spread of two major wildfires in the Similkameen.

“We’ve seen some challenges in the past few days, but thankfully we received some spotty precipitation on the north and the east flanks of the Snowy Mountain fire yesterday. There was no additional growth to the fire last night,” said Claire Allen, BC Wildfire information officer, adding that winds also let up overnight. “It was certainly a calmer night than we had been seeing in preceding evenings.”

Related: Keremeos firefighters working night patrols as Snowy Mountain fire rains ash, embers

The Snowy Mountain Fire is estimated at 10,911 hectares, and the nearby Placer Mountain fire is estimated at 2,372 hectares. Both are considered active fires.

Related: Update: Structures still at risk from Snowy Mountain fire

The Placer Mountain fire also got a bit of rain, but Allen said it was spotty, with some area getting just a few drops and other areas up to seven millimetres. But, she explained, it helped.

“There was certainly some good precipitation across there and, in conjunction with the excellent progress crews have been making on the fire, we are up to 90 per cent containment on that fire (Placer Mountain),” she said.

Allen said there isn’t a containment figure for the Snowy Mountain fire, but crews continue to work on them.

“Containment lines are being built, but certainly they have been challenged over the last few nights; thankfully nothing last night,” said Allen.

Crews are mainly working on the south and southeast flanks of the Snowy Mountain fire, where the fire is threatening properties across the Similkameen River. Other crews are working on strengthening perimeter lines on the northern parts of the fire, trying to prevent the fire from wrapping around the slopes and further threatening Keremeos, Cawston and other communities in the area.

“Anytime we have those winds from the south, Cawston and Keremeos are seeing more smoke blowing into their communities,” said Allen.

BC Wildfire reports there are 80 firefighters, along with three helicopters and four pieces of heavy equipment working on the Snowy Mountain fire.

Related: Similkameen grassfire put out within ‘a stones throw’ from homes


Steve Kidd
Senior reporter, Penticton Western News
Email me or message me on Facebook
Follow us on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Just Posted

Hoss happy to find a forever home for the holidays

SPCA South Okanagan-Similkameen Branch helps pup find a home

Council votes to take action on problem property

Mobile home was damaged in Aug. 15 fire

Police dog tracks down counterfeit suspect

Cop vehicle rammed, and pooch steals a chicken dinner

Parking study coming back to Penticton city council

Parking study lays out options to solve parking problems around SOEC

Penticton not an unsafe city, according to RCMP superintendent

RCMP superintendent says statistics are misleading

VIDEO: Ex-NASA engineer pranks mail thieves with glitter bomb trap

Package thefts are common this time of year, but YouTuber Mark Rober used his engineering skills

‘Laverne & Shirley’ star, ‘Big’ director Penny Marshall dies

Marshall died of complications from diabetes on Monday, Dec. 17, 2018, at her Hollywood Hills home. She was 75.

B.C. Court of Appeal to rule in terror case that centres on RCMP conduct

B.C.’s appeal court is scheduled to release a decision today on a couple whose guilty verdict over plotting to blow up the provincial legislature was thrown out by a lower court judge.

Trump backs off on demand for $5 billion to build a border wall

Congress and President Donald Trump continue to bicker over his demand that lawmakers fund a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.

Canadian detained in China, not clear if related to two other detentions

Reports suggest the person is not a diplomat or entrepreneur doing business in China.

Trudeau sees 2019 election as choice between positive Liberals, divisive Tories

Trudeau is drawing much the same battle lines that propelled the Liberals to a come-from-behind victory in 2015

Snowfall warning issued for Coquihalla, Highway 3

Make sure to equip winter tires if travelling

Lightning top Canucks 5-2 in feisty battle

NHL’s No. 1 team too much for Vancouver

UPDATE: Coquihalla reopens between Hope and Merritt

The highway is closed in the northbound lane

Most Read