Lytton Creek wildfire hits 40,000 hectares, has jumped Nicola River at multiple points

Lytton fire eclipses 40k ha.

UPDATE 6:45 p.m.

The BC Wildfire Service has published a new perimeter map of the massive Lytton Creek wildfire.

The mapping indicates the fire's estimated size has now cracked 40,000 hectares. The blaze also appears to have jumped the Nicola River and Highway 8 at three locations and burned right up to the south shore of the Thompson River across from Spences Bridge.

"The main body of the fire remains on the west side of the Nicola River where ground crews have successfully been utilizing hand ignitions to control the spread of the fire towards the river. Heavy equipment is working to establish a contingency guard on the southeast flank of the fire," BCWS said Monday afternoon

"Personnel are working on the flank of the fire along Highway 1 today near Spences Bridge and continuing south towards Nicomen. These crews will also be engaged in direct attack with additional helicopter support, and we be utilizing hand ignitions to control fire spread towards Spences Bridge and the Highway. Controlled ignitions are often being utilized throughout the evening when conditions are optimal."

UPDATE: 11:55 a.m.

Evacuation alerts in the area of Gladwin Mobile Home Park and Jade Springs have been rescinded, according to the Thompson-Nicola Regional District.

The all-clear was sent out by the TNRD on Monday morning for properties from 1144 Trans Canada Highway to 1820 Trans Canada Highway and 2256 Trans Canada Highway.

“The threat of wildfire in the area no longer poses an imminent risk to the safety of residents,” the TNRD said.

A full list and map of the areas where alerts have been rescinded can be found on the TNRD website.

The Lytton Creek wildfire is now estimated at 37,452 hectares in size, and continues to challenge crews on the northeast flank, near Highway 8.

ORIGINAL: 10:31 a.m.

Highway 8 remains closed as crews battle the Lytton Creek Fire, now estimated at 37,452 hectares in size according to new mapping from the BC Wildfire Service.

The BC Wildfire Service said crews occasionally have poor visibility due to smoke, which has impacted the agency's ability to update fire perimeters.

Persistent hot and dry conditions and strong winds also continue to challenge firefighting personnel.

“Wildfire activity continues to be expected to increase in the afternoons in some sections of the fire,” the BC Wildfire Service said.

In an update Sunday, the BC Wildfire Service said crews have made good progress on a 50-hectare spot fire that crossed Highway 8 on the northeast flank of the blaze. A hose lay has been placed around the perimeter, and helicopters and ground crews continued to work in this area.

“Heavy equipment is working to establish a contingency guard to the northeast of the spot fire. Hand ignitions have been successful in controlling fire spread on the west side of the Nicola River,” the agency said.

BC Wildfire Service said as of Sunday evening, the fire continues to grow towards Spences Bridge, which has been under evacuation order since Thursday. The agency's mapping data shows the fire's perimeter is within one kilometre of the community.

Crews are staying overnight to monitor the blaze, using small hand ignitions to control the progress of the fire. Helicopters are also bucketing this area of the fire.

Helicopters are also assisting in the Botanie Valley area, where the fire is burning in steep and rocky terrain, challenging control lines.

A number of evacuation orders and alerts have been issued for homes in the area. More information on impacted properties can be found on the Thompson-Nicola Regional District website.

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