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Lake Saganaga cabin and boathouse destroyed by fire

The peace and serenity of Lake Saganaga was shattered at 7:17 p.m. Sunday, August 11 when the sound of an overheated propane tank rocked the vicinity of a 55-year-old cabin on the Canadian side. The cabin as well as a boat house were on fire.

Word spread to homeowners via marine radio, and property owners hurried to the scene with pumps and hoses to try to extinguish the fire. 

One of those responding volunteers, Marco Manzo III of Sagonto  on Lake Saganaga, said 25 to 30 people showed up to fight the fire, including some guests at Sagonto. 

It was heavy, dirty work, getting water pumps into the lake and moving the water-filled hoses around. 

Manzo said at one point the fire jumped to the neighboring Rogers Island, where a cabin owner quickly extinguished the firebrands. 

Community members were able to keep the fire from spreading to the trees around the cabin; however, the two structures at the site, a boat house and the cabin, were completely destroyed. 

When the fire was under control, a water sprinkler was set up to completely douse the area. Manzo and another Saganaga resident, Eric Johnson, checked back later in the evening and found a few smoldering trees just outside the perimeter of the sprinkler. They worked with chainsaws to drop some snags and ensure the fire line held throughout the night. 

A helicopter from Canada landed and inspected the fire scene on Monday. 

The cause of the fire is not known. The cabin owners were not there at the time of the fire. 

Manzo said there were no injuries. He noted how fortunate that was. He said there was a gathering on Monday, to talk more about fire protection in this remote area. 

Photos courtesy of Marco Manzo III, Sagonto on Lake Saganaga

WTIP’s Rhonda Silence spoke with one of the responders, Matt Ritter.