Smoke was a key theme today as firefighters continue to battle multiple wildfires burning in the territory.
New Fire Information
According to a Yukon Wildland fire activity report, there are four new wildfires in the territory. All of the fires are burning in a wilderness zone about 107 kilometres northeast of Beaver Creek.
In a statement, Yukon Protective Services say a wildfire north of Fort Selkirk is currently out-of-control and is burning at 3069 hectares. They say they've implemented structure protection at Pelly Farm and are currently implementing site protection at the Fort Selkirk historic site. The wildfire is is approximately one kilometre from the Yukon River and officials say no structures are currently under threat.
Wildland FIre Information Officer Mike Fancie says despite smoke being a prominent theme throughout the territory today, he says crews successfully completed fire suppression efforts on the along the 13,000-hectare Hunker Summit fire southeast of Dawson City yesterday.
"The big story today for people in and down the Klondike is definitely wildfire smoke. We saw smokey conditions in the Gold Fields fire areas where we're currently operating. In the case of the Hunker Summit Fire, those smokey conditions actually served to limit fire activity yesterday. We were able to complete a fire guard between Flat Creek and Simplon Creek, which we then used to complete a burn-out operation and mitigate some of the danger to the highway and intended utilities."
Fancie says the smoke limited crews abilities yesterday to battle the 83,000-hectare Pigue Creek Wildfire also burning in the Klondike region.
"The Pigue Creek wIldfire is currently 0.3 kilometres from the Klondike Highway. Unfortunately with the smokey conditions I mentioned earlier, it limited the success of an attempted burn-off operation yesterday afternoon."
While Fancie notes an upper ridge system bringing much of the smoke to the Whitehorse area is expected to weaken over the next couple days, it is expected to strengthen back up again later this week.
Snag Campground Fire
Fancie says crews continue to battle the 1250-hectare Snag Campground fire, which is now burning on both sides of the Alaskan highway.
"We also did some ignition to shore-up some of the fuels around the Alaskan highway. The highway remains open to traffic like the North Klondike highway via pilot cars and flagging. Crews are still looking to secure the Snag Campground."
As of now, both the Alaskan and Klondike Highways are open, however travelers are encouraged to check Yukon 511 before they head out on the road.
According to the Yukon Fire Map, there are currently 39 active wildfires burning in the territory.