Water bombers attack brush fire burning east of Canmore

CALGARY — A brush fire burning west of Calgary made driving tricky Friday as first responders battled the blaze on the ground and by air.

The fire erupted over supper hour, near Lac des Arcs east of Canmore, sending smoke into the eastbound lanes of Hwy. 1.

Several first responders including Alberta Forestry attacked the fire which grew to over an acre, with planes and helicopters.

A number of travelers turned off Hwy. 1 onto 1A in order to avoid the smoke, and ended up watching in awe as firefighters tried to put the blaze out.

“They were hitting it very hard,” said Callandra Caufield who was returning from a B.C. vacation that she described as ‘essentially a fire-dodging trip’.

“The water bomber went through three, maybe four and when he left, there were two helicopters (that) came in and started to dump buckets on the fire.”

“It’s a big fire,” she added. “On the ridge it’s crawling up, it’s a bare rock ridge, so hopefully that’s going to slow it down but the wind is heavy. The wind is blowing very hard from west to east, driving towards Camp Chief Hector…so hopefully they can get it under control.”

wildfire, alberta, status

According to the Alberta Wildfire Status map, there are two out of control wildfires burning in central and southern Alberta. One is on the northern edge of Banff National Park and the other is near Rocky Mountain House.

There’s a fire ban in place for Town of Banff, along with national parks including Banff, Kootenay and Yoho.

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