Elaho Valley forest fire grows to 650 hectares

WATCH: Hot and dry conditions continue to fuel the wildfire situation – across the province.

VANCOUVER – A forest fire burning north of Squamish, in the Elaho Valley, has grown to 650 hectares in size.

Marg Drysdale from the Coastal Fire Centre said the fire, which was discovered early Sunday morning and is believed to be human-caused, is burning in steep, inaccessible terrain and the reduced visibility due to smoke continues to challenge fire crews.

Two officers, 70 firefighters and five helicopters are now battling the blaze, using two excavators, four treefallers and one water tender or tanker.

READ MORE: Small fires burning near Lions Bay and Stave Lake

The fire is showing “extreme fire behaviour” and dry conditions are making firefighting efforts worse for crews. The fire is generating smoke that can be seen across Squamish and the Elaho Valley.

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Depending on prevailing winds, smoke can travel long distances. For information about air quality or to view satellite imagery from the BlueSky Western Canada Wildfire Smoke Forecasting System, go to:

Anyone who sees a column of smoke, including in the Squamish/Pemberton valley, should report it by calling 1 800 663-5555 toll-free or *5555 on a cellphone.