High Level Area Update

High Level Forest Area Wildfire Update | July 20, 2019 at 11:00 a.m.

Posted on Sat, Jul 20, 2019


A Fire Advisory remains in effect for the High Level Forest Area.
Use caution within the Forest Protection Area. To report a wildfire, call 310-FIRE (3473). The Jackpot Creek fire is Under Control (UC).


There are currently 11 active wildfires in the High Level Area. Of these fires, 3 are Out of Control (OC), 5 are Being Held (BH) and 3 are Under Control (UC).
(See below for details on the Chuckegg Creek wildfire). Click here for a map of all fire locations and their status within the High Level Forest Area.

Wildfires of note:

  • Fire (HWF130) is located 40 km east of Meander River and is classified as Being Held (BH) at 5 hectares.  9 firefighters and 1 helicopter is currently working on this fire. 
  • Fire (HWF127) is located 26 km west of Garden River and is classified as Being Held (BH) at 60 hectares. There are 26 firefighter, 3 helicopters and heavy equipment is working on this fire. There is no threat to any communities at this time.
  • Fire (HWF126) is located 20 km northwest of Zama City and is classified as Out of Control (OC) at 45 hectares. There are 32 firefighters, 4 helicopters and heavy equipment are working on this fire. There is no threat to any communities at this time. 
  • Fire (HWF-124) is located 10 km southeast of High Level and is Under Control (UC) at 5.5 hectares.  There is no risk to communities at this time.
  • Fire (HWF-113) is located 62 km southeast of the Town of Rainbow Lake and is Being Held (BH) at 132 hectares. There are 33 firefighters and 4 helicopters working on this fire. There is no risk to communities at this time.
  • The Jackpot Creek wildfire (HWF-066) is located north of Lutose and is Under Control (UC) at 74,331 hectares. There are 30 firefighters, 4 helicopters and 9 pieces of heavy equipment working on this fire.

NOTE: Unless conditions change, the next update will be at 7:00 p.m. on July 20, 2019.

Firefighters, helicopters, airtankers and heavy equipment are positioned throughout the High Level Forest Area to respond to any new wildfire starts.

Ignition burn div C_7.19.19

Caption: ignition burn south of Devil Lake - July 19, 2019


  • Last recorded size: 342,629 hectares
  • Fire perimeter: 661.12 km
  • There are 639 firefighters and support staff, 45 helicopters and 61 pieces of heavy equipment fighting this wildfire.

Please be advised: smoke will continue to persist over surrounding communities. If you have any health concerns, please contact Alberta Health Services for assistance.

Last night an ignition operation was conducted to tie in a section of the forest to a fireguard south of Devil Lake. The operation went very well and managed to slow down the spread within that area.

Another day of extreme fire behaviour is expected, as crossover conditions will persist for most of the burning period this afternoon. Fire activity will remain into the evening, however slightly higher relative humidity levels should slow down fire spread.

Firefighting efforts south of Devil Lake and Surette Lake will continue for most of today as heavy equipment look to finish containing fingers that crossed the fireguard. Clean-up is still required, but excellent work from firefighters supported by helicopters bucketing has produced good suppression progress.

The portion of the fire southwest of Devil Lake was less active, as heavy equipment will continue to build fireguard along that outer edge.

Temperatures should reach 29 degrees with a relative humidity of 25-30%. Winds will be from the south/southwest at 15 km/hr. Ignition specialists have determined a new plan for the horseshoe west of the Peace River, but will continue to assess the situation and determine if conditions are appropriate to continue with planned controlled burn operations.

Extreme fire behaviour is expected to continue for the next several days, with similar temperatures and relative humidity levels extending into next week. Please remain vigilant and aware of your surroundings while traveling near the fire.

Supply, Equipment trailers

Equipment repair operations - Chuckegg camp (July 19, 2019)

Did you know?
Firefighters rely on equipment like water pumps and chainsaws to help in the firefighting efforts. So far, Chuckegg Creek wildfire has repaired over 500 pieces of equipment!

Although the Chuckegg Creek wildfire has not completely burned the entire interior of the fire, the current perimeter is over 610 km around - that's like driving from Edmonton to Calgary, and back!

Although the ignition burn is taking place near the water delivery system on the eastern side, it's still proving to be a very effective tool in limiting spread along the southern portion of the horseshoe. Large pumps, water tanks, a large water reservoir and sprinklers are being utilized for sprinkler operations and will be running 24/7 to help flood the area where the fire is burning in deep peat moss. Having this operation in place will continue to aid firefighters with direct attack on the fire perimeter. Heavy equipment and helicopters also continue to support firefighting efforts where needed.

Fire activity is ongoing within the perimeter of the fire, however all of the containment lines on the west, south, and southeast sides continue to be holding well. Firefighters are working hard with direct attack, extinguishing hotspots and mopping-up 100 feet inward south of Highway 58. Hose lay, mop-up and extinguishing hotspots continues on the southwest side, as firefighters are making great progress securing that side. In the southern end, high-altitude scanning continues to aid firefighters in finding priority area hotspots to address and extinguish.

The Chuckegg Creek wildfire will continue to be an active wildfire situation. As a result, smoke may be present along nearby highways and communities. Please use caution as you travel through these areas to ensure the safety of firefighters and community residents.




A Fire Advisory remains in effect due to the hotter temperatures, no significant rainfall and the ongoing wildfire activity within the High Level Forest Area.

Current short term permits will not be renewed and all permit holders with root rows/root piles need to ensure all piles are extinguished prior to the expiry of their permit.

  • Safe campfires are currently allowed
  • Current seasonal permits issued until October 31, 2019 will remain valid
  • New permits will only be issued for smudges and burn barrels

To get a fire permit please call 780-926-5407 and leave a detailed message including your home address, burn location and what you plan to burn. A patrolman will contact you to arrange a site visit.

Visit albertafirebans.ca for more information or download the new Alberta Fire Bans mobile app.


Download the Alberta Emergency Alert app or visit their website by clicking here. You can also check with the county, the town or your local community to see if new alerts or evacuation orders have been issued.


To stay informed on all road closure information visit the Alberta Transportation website or download the mobile app.


Smoke from wildfires in northern Alberta has caused poor air quality and reducing visibility at times. Winds will continue to shift bringing smoky conditions. For health related smoke issues, please visit Alberta Health Services.


During an active wildfire, the highest priority is the safety of the public and wildfire personnel. Please refrain from entering areas of active wildfire suppression. If you encounter aircraft or helicopter bucketing operations on a water body please move your boat to shore.   

The airspace around a wildfire is restricted via NOTAM in a radius of 9 kilometres to an altitude of 3,000 feet above ground level. It is illegal to operate any aircraft not associated with wildfire suppression within the restricted area, including drones. Do not fly drones or UAVs near or within the perimeter of an active wildfire. When a drone is near a wildfire it endangers firefighting personnel and important aerial firefighting operations will be grounded.  Those caught in violation can be subject to an automatic court appearance and a fine of up to $100,000. 



Kevin Kuhn | Wildfire Information Officer 

High Level Forest Area

Phone: 780-843-5846



Matt Bell | Wildfire Information Officer (Chuckegg Creek wildfire)

Phone: 587-986-4985