Fast-Moving Tahoe Fire Forces Campground Evacuations

Photo: CHP Air Operations

A small fire broke out in the Tahoe National Forest on Labor Day, and with windy conditions, quickly grew to 500 acres overnight. The fire caused headaches for the visitors during the 3-day weekend, with campers near Emigrant Gap being forced to evacuate.


As of Tuesday morning, the North Fire still sits at 500 acres and is currently 10 percent contained. The fire area near Emigrant Gap sits just west of Truckee and 70 miles east of Sacramento off of I-80. The fire had reportedly grown to 650 acres, but now officials are saying the area is closer to 500 acres.

Placer County Sheriff’s were forced to evacuate campers in the the North Fork Campground, Onion Valley Campground and Tunnel Mills Campground. On Monday, a helicopter was dispatched to rescue a person who was unable to evacuate the area.

“We are evacuating the area and asking people to stay out of the area because Interstate 80 is already busy, and this is making it worse,” said Lt. Andrew Scott, the spokesman for the sheriff’s office.

High winds created a fast-moving fire on Monday, with officials hurrying to create containment lines in the thick forests of the area. Here is a quick timelapse to show you how it erupted within an hour.

The area popular for outdoor enthusiasts with numerous trails, lakes and rivers nearby. With the fire located in a national forest, U.S. Forest Service is managing the fire, although Cal Fire officials dispatched air tankers, a helicopter and strike crews to assist.

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