August 11, 2014 7:59 pm

Province busy with larger number of wildfires

Evacuation order for Stanley Mission lifted after officials determine forest fire no longer poses threat to the northern Saskatchewan community.

Yollanda Roberts / Viewer Supplied

SASKATOON – Saskatchewan is experiencing more wildfires than usual for this time of year, according to the ministry of environment.

As of Monday, there were roughly 82 active forest fires in the province.

Provincial fire centre manager Scott Wasylenchuk says the season usually starts winding down around this time.

There have been 362 wildfires so far this year, with 120 from the past two weeks.

At this same time in 2013, there had been 314 blazes.

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“These last two weeks it’s been hot and dry. We had lightning go across the north, the north is quite a bit dryer than it is south of the Churchill River system,” said Wasylenchuk.

“We are expecting it to be hot and dry again for this whole week.”

Global News meteorologist Peter Quinlan also says August kicked off on an extremely dry note across much of northern Saskatchewan.

A ridge of high pressure in the upper atmosphere is currently building which will keep most storms and rainfall out of the province until the weekend when the ridge begins to collapse.

Clear skies along with light winds and hot temperatures soaring into the 30s are expected all week across the north with extremely dry conditions prevailing.

In May, people were evacuated from Stanley Mission, Sask. due to a forest fire in northern Saskatchewan.

READ MORE: Forest fire forces evacuation of Stanley Mission, Saskatchewan

This fire has been declared out and evacuees have settled back into the community.

Wasylenchuk says no communities are currently threatened but the province is doing values protections due to some fires in the north.

Typically, the wildfire season extends from April 1 to Oct. 31 in Saskatchewan.

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