The BC Wildfire Service says firefighters battling the Bush Creek East wildfire are seeing increased activity in some areas on Saturday.
Smoke plumes have been visible above different areas impacted by the 43,346-hectare blaze on Friday and Saturday. The fire has burned west and east of Adams Lake, north of Shuswap and Little Shuswap Lake, and between Chase and Sorrento, destroying hundreds of structures.
Jody Lucius, BCWS fire information officer, said the wildfire is more active as a result of windy conditions and hot, dry temperatures.
Lucius said crews are responding to different areas of fire activity as needed. She noted for the most part, these smoke plumes are coming from areas within the fire's perimeter.
“We may see a little bit of growth today just given that we do have those windy conditions,” she said.
“We do have crews throughout the fire in various areas of concern, and then we do have those helicopters that are supporting with bucketing where necessary as well as heavy equipment supplying water and other support to those ground crews.”
Lucius said air tankers are also available if needed.
In a social media post, the BC Wildfire Service said several fires in the Kamloops Fire Center are exhibiting increased fire activity this weekend.
Fire activity at the Bush Creek blaze is expected to increase as a dry weather trend continues.
“Deeper, burning fuels may increase in fire activity as temperatures and winds increase,” BCWS said.
In Adams Lake, personnel are directly attacking the fire perimeter to prevent growth, and are also extinguishing hot spots inside the perimeter near Bruhn Creek, Adams Hill, Hiui Hill and Tsalkom Mountain.
In the North Shuswap area, ground crews are actioning hot spots closest to communities, while structure protection crews have returned to provide overnight monitoring and patrol.
Firefighters are directly attacking the fire’s edge in Turtle Valley and Sorrento to minimize fire spread on the northeast of Squilax Mountain.
“Heavy equipment and water tenders are supporting ground crews in the area,” BCWS said.
On Saturday, there are 189 wildland firefighters and 31 support staff assigned to the blaze, along with seven structure protection crews.
There are 10 helicopters assigned to the Adams Complex, which includes the Bush Creek East wildfire as well as the Rossmoore wildfire, burning south of Kamloops.
There are 26 pieces of heavy equipment working at the Bush Creek fire.
BCWS said although the fall season is approaching, communities can expect to see smoke within the perimeter over the coming weeks. Residents should call the wildfire service to report smoke if it appears to be coming from outside the fire perimeter, or from an area with green, unburned fuel.