Smoke, ash from Tamarack Fire impacting Lake Tahoe

Dozens of motorists on Sunday watched the blaze progess from Carson Pass. (Bill Rozak / Tahoe Daily Tribune)

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — Smoke and ash from the Tamarack Fire are impacting the Lake Tahoe Basin.

The fire, estimated at 18,299 acres and burning in the Carson Ranger District, was remapped from officials’ estimate in the morning of 22,000-plus, and remains 0% contained as of about noon Sunday.

There is no direct threat to South Lake Tahoe, the Lake Valley Fire District on Sunday. The district had a strike team assigned to the blaze.

Dozens of motorists pulled over in turnouts on Carson Pass Sunday afternoon to get a good view of smoke that billowed high into the sky and drifted toward the basin.

In Woodfords, where highways 4 and 89 to Markleeville are closed, ash was falling like light snow and light smoke blanketed the area. Highway 88 is open with no blockages or delays from Jackson through Woodfords.

Highways 4 and 89 to Markleeville are closed at Highway 88 in Woodfords. (Bill Rozak / Tahoe Daily Tribune)

California Highway Patrol was at the road closure and within just a few minutes, fire trucks from North Lake Tahoe Fire and Slide Mountain drove past the blockage.

As of Sunday afternoon, 517 personnel are battling the fire.

The Pacific Crest Trail is closed between Highway 88 and Highway 4. Fire officials are asking trail users to find areas away from the fire.

Officials said failure to comply with closure may result in criminal or civil penalties, including up to $5,000 in fines or six months in jail.

Evacuation orders have been issued for Markleeville, Grover Hot Springs and campground area, Shay Creek, Markleevillage, Alpine Village, Woodfords, East Fork Resort and the community of Hung A Lel Ti.

The CHP said the blaze was threatening approximately 200 residences in Markleeville, and has burned approximately 10 homes. It added that at one point Markleeville was surrounded by fire, but fire personnel have so far been able to protect most of the structures.

Firefighters are battling the blaze amid perfect fire conditions.

A red flag warning is in effect through 11 a.m. Monday.

Officials said firefighters’ goal on Sunday was to focus on “preserving life and property with point protection of structures and putting in containment lines where possible. The fire continues to impact the community of Markleeville and the surrounding areas.”

Smoke is expected to continue to impact the region and officials advise that individuals with compromised respiratory systems should limit outdoor exposure if possible.

There are no evacuation orders for the South Lake Tahoe area, but officials recommend signing up for red alerts at

The Tamarack Fire on Sunday afternoon from Carson Pass. (Bill Rozak / Tahoe Daily Tribune)
A truck from the North Lake Tahoe Fire Protection District moves past the road closure. (Bill Rozak / Tahoe Daily Tribune)
A view from Zephyr Cove on Sunday afternoon. (Provided /
A view from Heavenly Mountain Resort on Sunday afternoon. (Provided /


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