Maybe it was the rain dancing, maybe it was some prayers being answered.

But Yellowknife got some unexpected rain on Sunday evening, which helped to keep the nearby wildfire from hitting the outskirts of the city.

Monday morning’s update from Mike Westwick, wildfire information officer for the North Slave region, noted that around 10 mm of rain fell on Yellowknife with around half of that directly hitting the fire.

As of Monday morning, the Behchoko-Yellowknife fire sat at around 167,802 hectares and still remained 15 km from the city’s municipal boundary. Westwick stated that because of the unexpected rainfall and aerial support, the fire wouldn’t hit the boundary until at least the middle of the week, if at all.

Westwick did warn that the blaze still posed a threat as deep-burning fire exists along a huge section of fire line.

He also stated that help from rain and changing wind conditions put crews in a position to launch a direct attack on the eastern perimeter of the fire, which measures roughly 40 km in size.

The Ingraham Trail fire is sitting at 50,208 hectares and, like the Yellowknife fire, isn’t expected to reach the trail until the middle of the week because of shifting winds.

Westwick stated the goal is to try and hold the fire back from control lines which sit 5 km from Prelude Lake, but he did warn that the threat still very much exists and that it’s the most active of all fires in the North Slave region.

As for the Dettah fire, it was estimated to be around 49,502 hectares and sat around 29 km from the community. That blaze also received a sizable dump of rain on Saturday, which has slowed its growth.

Westwick stated that a planned ignition operation has been delayed for the time being and that a large control line stretching from Great Slave Lake through to central Jennejohn Lake has been built and bolstered by fire retardant.


James McCarthy

I've been hanging around the office as the sports editor for the better part of the last 16 years. In August 2022, NNSL Media decided to promote me to the managing editor's position, which I accepted after...

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