West Kelowna  

Minimal growth at fire

UPDATE: 8:50 p.m.

The BC Wildfire Service says there was minimal growth at the Gottfriedsen Mountain wildfire on Saturday.

The fire burning north of the Okanagan Connector remains mapped at 550 hectares, but fire information officer Brenna Ward says weren't able to get a track of its growth today.

"I'm assuming for a variety of different reasons. Being tied up in other response and suppression activities, as well as I know this morning there was quite a lot of smoke and they were unable to get a good sighting of the perimeter," Ward says.

Fourteen personnel and three pieces of heavy equipment were at the fire on Saturday, and Ward says none will be at the blaze overnight.

UPDATE: 1:15 p.m.

While good progress has been made on the wildfire burning north of the Okanagan Connector, conditions may be changing shortly.

Fire information officer Brenna Ward says they're expecting erratic, strong winds in the area, along with lightning. 

Ward says while they're still estimating the fire to be 550 hectares in size, they do know the fire grew overnight, and they're planning on getting a better size estimate later today as the smoke clears. 

While helicopters and air tankers are not currently working on the blaze, Ward says they can be called if needed. 

UPDATE: 11:25 a.m.

Fire crews have made “good progress” on the Gottfriedsen Mountain wildfire, building a fire guard on the west flank of the blaze.

The wildfire is still estimated to be 550 hectares in size, as the fire's spread slowed Friday, and it began burning back on itself when the wind shifted Friday evening.

There are 14 firefighters working the blaze Saturday, along with three pieces of heavy equipment to help with building the guard. There is no air support working on the fire at this time.

An evacuation alert remains in effect for a large area north of the Okanagan Connector, which includes the Pennask Lake Lodge and the Hatheume Lake Resort.

The Okanagan Connector remains open in both directions, and has not been impacted by the wildfire.

ORIGINAL: 8 a.m.

The weather appears to have helped fire crews working on the Gottfriedsen Mountain fire burning north of the Okanagan Connector.

Friday saw less winds at the fire than the day before, when strong winds resulted in rapid growth through Thursday night.

The fire continues to be estimated at 550 hectares in size, burning 24 kilometres from West Kelowna.

As winds did pick up slightly Friday evening, the direction shifted, forcing the fire back on itself.

Nine firefighters fought the fire through the evening, along with assistance from heavy equipment.

Crews were supported by an air tanker and helicopters through the day Friday, but it's unclear if these resources will be used once again today.

A large area around the fire is under an evacuation alert. The Pennask Lake Lodge and Hatheume Lake Resort, along with nearby cabins, are under the alert.

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