More evacuations issued, Highway 88 closed due to Tamarack Fire

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — Authorities have again closed California State Route 88 and issued more evacuation notices due to the Tamarack Fire that continues to rage out of control.

Highway 88 was closed Tuesday afternoon from Picketts Junction to Nevada.

Alpine County Undersheriff Tom Minder on Tuesday evening said the closure was due to active fire in Woodfords Canyon.

Fire mapping on Wednesday morning shows hot spots along the southside of Highway 88.

Crews are working in the Woodfords area in an effort to keep the fire from jumping Highway 88 and getting into the forest in the Carson Range.

Operations Section Chief Pat Seekins said there has been significant fire activity in Woodfords but there are also a lot of firefighters.

Voluntary evacuations were issued at about 9 p.m. Tuesday for all residents in Leviathan Mine Rd. and Holbrook Junction areas as the fire burned into Douglas County.

According to the InciWeb Incident Information System the fire is at 39,045 acres.

In Nevada, only the governor can order mandatory evacuations, but residents should listen to first reponders’ requests.

The highest priority is protecting homes around the U.S. Highway 395 corridor, Seekins said.

“There’s a lot of potential for this fire to move around in here,” Seekins said while looking at a map of the fire. “Our highest priority is the 395 corridor.”

A Type 1 Incident Management Team took charge of the fire on Tuesday.

At the evening briefing, new Incident Commander Dan Dallas said aircraft were allowed to fly but the sunny weather also heats up the fire’s fuel. He said the conditions are about as dry as they can get.

Fire Behavior Analyst Glen Lewis said unseasonably hot and dry weather is contributing to fire growth like an open damper on a chimney.

“When it’s all the way open the fire is accelerated,” he said.

Residents can use Topaz Ranch Estates Community Center as an evacuation site located at 3939 Carter Dr., Wellington. Livestock can be taken to the Carson City Fairgrounds/Fuji Park. Residents should provide food for livestock and bring water buckets if possible. The fairgrounds cannot shelter dogs and cats.

Anyone who lives south of Leviathan Mine Road should evacuate to the TRE Community Center.

Those who live north of Leviathan Mine Rd. should go to the Douglas County Community and Senior Center.

Map of the Tamarack Fire. (Provided /

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