'It's crispy dry': Sweeping grass fire chars Lumsden Valley
Thursday's blaze burned for several hours in the area
Firefighters were kept busy into the night as they battled a blaze which tore through the dry Lumsden Valley on Thursday.
The massive blaze burned about 800 acres of land, according to the Chief of the Lumsden Fire Department.
"That was definitely a big one," said Chief Jeff Carey, a fire department veteran of 25 years.
The volunteer fire department was dispatched just after 4 p.m. CST, and Carey said the conditions were telling of what was to come.
The fire was intense, he said, because of the extremely dry grass and the howling winds that fuelled the fire.
Furthermore, it was burning near several acreages and the landscape made some areas inaccessible.
"It was pretty close, it was close to being a loss."
The Lumsden Fire Department was assisted by crews from Regina and Craven, as well as locals and passersby. Carey said the turnout was incredible.
"I couldn't even guess a number of how many stopped," he said.
The extra help from civilians was particularly important to the firefighters.
Everyone seemed to pitch in, said Florence Ziegler, who is the co-owner of 3 Flags Motorsports Park.
"There were neighbours helping everywhere. People were bringing in trailers from all over the place," she said, adding site management showed up with two tanker trucks and members of the nearby Hutterite colony brought a tanker of their own.
"Out here where we are, we don't have water. We have wells, so we pump, we bring water in."
People helped each other create fire breaks and protect farm animals.
Ziegler had never seen a fire like this during her decade spent in the area, and was amazed it happened at this time of year.
The fire was brought under control about seven hours after crews were dispatched. Carey said the department is always prepared, but noted the dry weather could mean more fire in the future.
No injuries have been reported and the cause is still unknown.
The large grass fire isn't the first of the season. Last Sunday, crews responded to a fire near the Wascana Valley Trails.
It took firefighters about two and a half hours to control the fire, which eventually burned about 12 hectares of grassland, or 25 to 30 acres.