Campgrounds taking a financial hit from wildfires

By Vanessa Ybarra
July 30, 2017 - 5:02pm

HEFFLEY LAKE, B.C.  — Southern Interior campgrounds are taking a financial hit from the wildfires.

David Lumsden and his wife Gail run the Hitch N Rail Resort on Heffley Lake.

Lumsden says they've lost more than $40-thousand from campsite cancellations and a decline in restauraunt revenue over the last month.

"For a lot of people it's asthma concerns with the smoke as well as ongoing highway closures in the area," said Lumsden. " The fire up in Heffley-Louis Creek put a lot of fear into people's minds. I had people arrive today that were pretty skeptical about coming. Hopefully we'll start to recover but we've lost a tremendous amount of money."

Heffley Lake has been relatively unaffected from wildfires besides a one hectare fire that broke out in nearby Whitecroft earlier this week.

Barry Tripp, Manager of the Legacy Park campground in Ashcroft , says they've also had a significant loss of revenue from roadblock closures and air quality concerns.

"Once the Elephant Fire fire hit we lost pretty much all of our reservations and we're still getting cancellations into August," said Tripp. "We're hoping to recover some of the loss from the province's Emergency Social Services."

Both Lumsden and Tripp have taken advantage of their empty campgrounds by housing numerous evacuees over the last month.



Firefighters douse brush fire on West Victoria Street early this morning