Fires on the southwest side of the Maisy May Creek burn around the Stewart River. As of July 28, fires in areas surrounding Dawson City, Ross River, Mayo and the Teslin River were all burning. (Yukon Protective Services/Twitter)

Hot, dry weather means Yukon wildfires grow

Crews have been called in from Alberta to help

Multiple wildfires have been burning across the territory thanks in part to the recent spell of hot and dry weather.

All of the Yukon’s firefighting crews have been called into action and four additional crews and support staff were flown in from Alberta to help.

As of July 28, fires in areas surrounding Dawson City, Ross River, Mayo and the Teslin River were all burning. For the second time an evacuation alert was issued for sections of the Robert Campbell Highway as a result of the Poison Lake fire which has now grown to more than 10,500 hectares.

The fire near the South McMillan River, north of Ross River, is approximately 15,000 ha in size, officials said on the weekend. It is in a wilderness zone but protection has been placed at a camp in the area as a precaution.

In the Dawson area multiple wildfires are burning west of Dawson City, and may impact mining activities in the area, according to a press release.

The fire near the Teslin River, 69 kilometres northeast of Whitehorse, is burning in the wilderness zone and is approximately 400 ha. The “fire is being monitored closely,” according to the press release.

A fire on the south shore of Mayo Lake, 53 km northeast of Mayo is approximately 1,500 ha in size. “It is being monitored at this time and sprinkler systems are being placed at structures in the area as a precaution,” according to the bulletin.

On July 27 officials issued a second evacuation alert as a result of the Poison Lake fire. At the time the fire was an estimated 10,400 ha in size but had not crossed the Frances River.

Residents and visitors on kilometres 30 to 60 of the Robert Campbell Highway must be ready to evacuate within two hours of being notified.

“Watson Lake is not being affected but smoke may be visible in the area due to a decrease in wind,” according to the bulletin.

On July 9 an evacuation alert was issued for almost the exact same stretch of highway. It was originally lifted on the July 17

There are currently 22 active fires in the territory that have burned 39,119 ha.

Contact Ashley Joannou at ashleyj@yukon-news.com

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