This dry, hot summer has been a forest fire nightmare. There are currently major fires burning outside every major community in the Yukon, with fires near Watson Lake being critical, and many more throughout Alaska and British Columbia where several communities are on evacuation alert. The last few days, the weather forecast in Dawson has been represented by a fire, indicating smokey conditions. I don’t have a very good olfactory sense, but I’ve been able to smell the smoke for two days now. Today, it was particularly cloying as it’s also damp out.
This is what things have looked like for several days now. Don’t mistake it for fog, this smoke is thick, grey, and tastes like ash.
We had a good dose of rain overnight, taking us from hot and dry to cold and damp in just twelve hours, but it will take a lot more to end the wildfires.
European tourists I spoke to yesterday were flabbergasted that we don’t put the fires out. I replied that forest fires are a natural phenomenon often sparked by lighting more than by human hand. It’s cost prohibitive to put out fires in the wilderness and not ecologically sound to do so. Some plants need the high heat of wildfires for germination. Wildfire suppression causes more damage in the long run than letting nature run its course.Share on Facebook