NSW firefighters are hoping for a better day at three firegrounds on the NSW north coast as they continue efforts to get on top of three major blazes still burning out of control.
Watch-and-Act alerts remain in place today for fires at Bees Nest near Armidale, Drake near Tenterfield and Shark Creek in the Clarence Valley after emergency warnings were downgraded on Tuesday.
The Bees Nest fire has taken out more than 66,500 hectares and is still burning close to homes and properties, although conditions have generally eased off from earlier in the week.
But residents in Billys Creek, Tyringham, Marengo, Moonpar, Dundarrabin and Bostobrick have been advised to continue to monitor the situation.
The Long Gully road fire at Drake has burned around 40,000ha and is still not under control and is continuing to spread in a number of directions due to high winds.
The areas most affected are west of the Clarence River in the Girard State Forest.
At Shark Creek, the fire is burning south of Yamba and to the north and south of the villages of Angourie and Wooloweyah.
This fire has burned through more than 9300ha of bushland in the Yuraygir National Park.
Clarence Valley Mayor Jim Simmons said he couldn't remember the area being so dry and described conditions as "really terrible".
"We haven't seen anything like this in my lifetime," he said.
But firefighters have slowed the spread of the flames and "conditions are easing and the immediate threat to properties has eased", the NSW Rural Fire Service said this morning.
NSW Premier Glady Berejiklian is due to visit the firegrounds today to see the damage first hand.
She will be travelling to Glen Innes and Tenterfield with Deputy Premier John Barilaro and Emergency Services Minister David Elliot.
As of Tuesday, nine homes and 34 outbuildings had been destroyed and another six homes damaged, with most of the losses occurring at the Drake fire.
But more than 220 homes in the immediate areas of the fires have been saved since the emergency began late last week.
More on-the-ground assessments will be carried out today.
Earlier in the week, heavy winds and gales made the fire fighting task difficult but more favourable conditions are forecast today, including lighter winds.
More than 630 firefighters are still in the field.
Australian Associated Press