Park trails open as fire danger to Tahoe fades |

Park trails open as fire danger to Tahoe fades

Susan Wood

Trails at the Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park at Spooner Lake closed during Carson City’s Waterfall fire had reopened Sunday morning – with the exception of the Red House Flume route along Hobart Road.

“I didn’t think they were going to (so soon). But it looks better than what they expected it would,” said Max Jones, who runs the Spooner Lake Cross Country center. The business oversees cross country skiing operations in the winter as well as hiking and mountain biking ventures in summer.

Jones rode the popular Flume Trail from North Canyon Road on Sunday to check out the surroundings.

The fire – blamed for consuming 7,566 acres and 16 structures – came to within a half-mile of the park. As of press time, it was 85 percent contained. Full containment is expected Tuesday.

Jones, who lives in Carson City, had concerns at the workplace and home. The house has a wood shake roof, his daughter, Caitlin, reminded him Wednesday.

“She wanted me to replace it that night,” he said.

Jones said he was concerned the fire may shift west, but that “would take extreme conditions.”

The fire made a turning point Friday, when it neared the northwest corner of the state park.

“They hit that corner hard with 90,000 gallons of retardant,” said Pat Irwin of the Sierra Front Interagency Dispatch Center in Minden.

Irwin warned residents that residual smoke will be a common sight – even after containment.

Power appears fully restored for North Lake Tahoe customers of Sierra Pacific, which runs a 120,000-volt line to their households. Fire officials asked power to be cut to the line for safety reasons.

South Shore fire agencies returned to their home bases this weekend.

– Susan Wood can be reached at (530) 542-8009 or via e-mail at

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