UPDATE: Abandoned campfire likely sparked park blaze
It appears as though an abandoned campfire sparked a five-hectare blaze that scorched the slopes of a downtown Kamloops park on the weekend.
Kamloops Fire Rescue Lieut. Dan Funk said that's what two days of investigation have shown following the fire on Sunday, Oct. 14.
"We did find an abandoned campfire up there," he said. "It was basically a place people were hanging out for a long time."
Investigators also found other items — including beer cans and trash — in the area.
Funk said it's unclear if people had been camped out in the park or if it was a party spot.
Emergency crews were called to the fire at about 2:30 p.m. on Sunday. More than 30 firefighters were battling the blaze before it was contained at about 7 p.m.
Peterson Creek is no stranger to fire activity.
In May, two grassfires in the park within a week were believed to have been intentionally set.
In 2009, serial arsonist David Glenn Hurst was arrested after a string of suspicious fires in the park. Mounties caught the 52-year-old after an elaborate old-school police stakeout caught him setting a tree on fire.
"Peterson Creek has been known to have some problems in the past," Funk said.
Fires in parks are prohibited year-round.
Funk said the investigation is now in the follow-up stage, as photos and witness information is reviewed.