Footage from Raven Lake Forest Fire

Ellie and her family (yours truly) arrived to Raven Lake landing at 2:30PM on May 12th, 2016. The forest fire on the north shore of Five Mile Bay had been burning for just over an hour (apparently the call to 911 occurred near 1:00PM when a cottager on the south side of the lake saw an unhealthy amount of smoke). The Dorset Fire Department and Fire Rescue Marine Unit was on the scene, and an OPP coordinating officer blocked the entrance to the landing. The officer said that a helicopter was arriving any minute to deliver firefighters, so we needed to stay out of the way.

We watched the helicopter circle around then land on the floating dock to deliver the MNRF Fire Rangers and gear. The boat load of fire fighters motored off to fight the fire behind the cottages. Then the “bird-dog” (an aerial scout) arrived and circled around several times to inspect the fire. It stayed in the area the whole time to direct the two water bombers who arrived minutes later.

After several bombing runs (about an hour) the fire was contained to about seven hectares. The fire came to within feet of burning the row of cottages.

“Just stay out of the way of the water bombers…” – Dorset Firefighter

When it looked like it was safe enough for us to head down the lake, I asked the fire commander at the landing if it was okay for us to go. He said, “Nice jammies… just stay out of the way of the water bombers if you hear them coming.”

“Yeah, no problem!” I said. And off we went.

Two hours later the water bombers were called back and did about 10 more runs. The ground crew worked all afternoon and into the night to put the fire out. They stayed on the scene with water pumps running for several days days to contain and monitor the area to ensure the fire stayed out.

Snapped 24hrs after the fire started. By this point, the ground crews had the fire contained and were staying on the scene for several days to monitor the area. Thank you so much!
photo by Sean Hungerford


photo by Sean Hungerford


2 thoughts on “Footage from Raven Lake Forest Fire

  1. My dad David mangotic was the one who called the fire department. He was driving home from dorset when he saw the smoke from hwy 35 and thought someone was burning some brush. When he returned to the cottage he said he could see the smoke across the lake and that the smoke was super high and black. It waa then he realized this was not someone just burning some brush, so he jumped in his boat and headed to the location of the fire. When he saw the flames in the brush he called 911 immediately from his boat, luckily he had brought his cell phone. He went back to the cottage to get some buckets to fill with water but when he arrived back at the location of the fire he could see the fire trucks arrive at the landing. Thank goodness my dad was up during the week as he was supposed to be returning home to visit his grandson (my son). I guess we know now it was a lucky thing he stayed up on Raven!

    1. Your dad is good man, Shannon! I saw him at the landing with the fire trucks after the helicopter arrived. Thankfully there were people at the lake who responded. Apparently there was someone across the lake who also called 911… Engaged and caring community members (like your dad) make our lake better for all of us.

      We are a community and look out for each other.

      Everyone handled the situation with professionalism and confidence.
      Thank you for your comment.

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