last updated September 18, 2009

Link to DNR official webpage

The department operates 33 seasonal fire lookout towers throughout the province.  In the past there were many more, and the lookouts actually lived at some or all of the sites rather than follow today's usual custom of driving to the site for daytime duty.    Lookouts carry with them a handheld TMR radio and check in with the local DNR office at the beginning and end of the shift, and to report on any fire activity of note.    There is no specific talk group for lookouts, and they simply use the local channel.   Commonly you might hear a lookout call in to say that he or she has noticed a "smoke" in a specific direction and estmated distance, as well as characteristics such as colour and changes over time.    The towers are equipped with a map table and device enabling the lookout to point to the smoke and read off the compass azimuth angle.     On some occasions this report will be sufficient to enable a DNR member in a vehicle to locate the fire, or even to check in the records for authorized burns.       Other times, another tower will be contacted in order to do a triangulation and locate the fire.  This is less common than in the past, as the towers are in most cases quite far apart, and visibility may as well not be sufficient.

The following list was derived from referencing the 5th edition of The Nova Scotia Atlas, prepared by Service NS and Municipal Relations at the NS Geomatics Centre.   Towers are arranged by county.   Names are as used on the radio (as reported by scanner listeners) or where starred they are tentative names based on the nearby features or settlements, and in these cases your input is requested.   It is likely that some of the listed towers are now decommissioned.  For example it was reported by area listeners that the Willow Hill tower in Hants County was closed in 2009.

 Please email with additions, with correct names for towers, and also which talk group sites they are heard on. or PM or post via ScanMaritimes.



County Tower Name* Location Talk Group
Annapolis DND* Valleyview Prov Pk.   Also an IMRS site DNR Annapolis
Annapolis Dunn Lake 10 km SW of Springfield DNR Annapolis
Antigonish Fairmont N of Antigonish at the IMRS/TMR site DNR Antigonish
CBRM Georges Lake* Inland from Ironville, in the Boisdale Hills  
CBRM Macleod Lake* Between Trout Brook and the National Hist Park  
Colchester Nuttby Mtn Between Truro and Tatamagouche. IMRS and TMR site DNR Bible Hill
Cumberland Kirkhill* map indicates this is north of the Kirkhill IMRS site  
Cumberland New Yarmouth In Cape Chignecto Prov Pk  
Cumberland Springhill Adjacent to the town  
Cumberland Sugarloaf Overlooking the north shore, at the IMRS site  
Digby Sissiboo* 2 km SE of Sissiboo Falls  
Digby Hill Lake* SE of Morganville close to Annapolis boundary  
Guysborough Garden of Eden Nr Twin Oaks Lk, just inside Guysborough.  DNR MacLellans Brook
Guysborough Giants Lake 5 km NNW of the settlement, nr Antigonish boundary DNR Guysborough
Guysborough Governor Lake adjacent to Highway 374, just inside the county DNR Stillwater
Guysborough Lundy Near Hydes Lake at the Lundy IMRS/TMR site DNR Guysborough
Hants Barr Settlement In the Gore area, at the IMRS site DNR Bible Hill
Hants Willow Hill On the hill, in Ardoise  (might be closed as of 2009) Windsor
HRM Johnson Hill Near Lower Meaghers Grant DNR Middle Musquodoboit
HRM Marinette adjacent to Highway 224; Sheet Hbr area DNR Middle Musquodoboit
Inverness River Denys Rd* on the Big Ridge  
Kings Lake George On the nearby hill DNR Kentville
Lunenburg Sherwood Also an IMRS site DNR Bridgewater
Pictou  Blue Mtn On Blue or Sutherlands Mtn, SE Pictou County DNR MacLellans Brook
Pictou  Dalhousie Mtn W end of Pictou County, 3 km NW of Brookland TMR DNR MacLellans Brook
Queens Kejimkujik* Just inside Queens boundary. Not a DNR site Parks Canada (or VHF 166.05?)
Queens Milton Kempton Meadow, inland from Liverpool DNR Milton
Queens West Caledonia nr Menchan Lake, 3km E of Kejimkujik Park DNR Milton
Richmond Lochside* In the East Bay Hills  
Shelburne Middle Ohio On Highway 203, at the iMRS site DNR Churchover
Victoria MacDonalds Mtn* inland from West Tarbot, CB Highlands  
Yarmouth Pubnico* adj to Highway 103, just E of E Pubnico  
Yarmouth E. Kemptville by Highway 203 just SW of town.  IMRS site  
Yarmouth Springhaven* at the settlement