Alberta’s Waterton national park which is usually teeming with summer visitors is now deserted except for emergency workers who are there to save its buildings if it catches a wildfire.
The park has ordered for evacuation of its Waterton Lakes National Park following Kenow fire in British Columbia near the boundary with Alberta. The wildfire has been broke up there since a week and is advancing ahead towards community; it may sweep across the Alberta National Park. According to the weather forecast, a shift in the wind may increase the wildfire danger. The wildfire has already covered 80 kilometers of area.
The fire workers have set up high volume pumps and sprinklers around the park; it creates a wet barrier and slows down flames of the fire. Fire fighters are on alert around the town which even includes Prince of Wales Hotel and are prepared to put the fire out if it catches.
Earlier this week, Parks Canada had warned people to leave at a short notice, but as on Friday the flame advanced to the park, the evacuation was made mandatory. The flames on Saturday were just 15-20 kilometers from the town.
Strong winds and flames took it to the park and have burnt about half a hectare inside the park’s boundary Saturday afternoon. The fire was shifting towards southeast direction along the Akamina Valley outside the park. The emergency workers employed helicopters to drop buckets of water, but the operations couldn’t be continued as wind intensified. The efforts will be resumed once the winds slow down.
Crew members are continuously protecting two backcountry warden cabins, camp grounds, day-use areas, a church camp and a ski shelter.
Waterton Lakes National Park is situated in the southwest corner of Alberta, Canada. It was formed in the year 1895 and is covered with 195 square miles of rugged mountains and wildlife. The national park shares border with Glacier National Park Montana of United States.