Firefighters Make Headway on Burnside Blaze

Evacuation orders were lifted Monday as firefighters gained on a wildland blaze in the eastern Sierra, officials said.

Temperatures near freezing Sunday night helped chill the blaze that broke out earlier in the day in Alpine County's scenic Hope Valley south of Lake Tahoe, near the junction of highways 88 and 89.

Firefighters reported some of their smaller water hoses froze because of the plunging temperature, fire spokesman Mark Struble said.

The cause of the Burnside fire remained under investigation. There was no lightning in the area when the fire broke out, officials said.

Fueled by gusty wind, the fire quickly spread through heavy timber and brush.

Sorenson's Resort, Hope Valley Resort, two campgrounds and about 20 homes in the area were told the evacuate Sunday.

The order was lifted Monday afternoon after fire danger subsided, Struble said.

"We had a very favorable wind shift that blew the fire back on itself," he said.

The fire was estimated at 150 acres and 30 percent contained, Struble said.

Meanwhile, state and regional firefighters confronted a new fire that broke out Monday afternoon about 117 miles west, in a rural area north of the town of Lincoln.

The blaze, which quickly swelled to more than 500 acres, destroyed a home that had been unoccupied for a long time and presumed abandoned, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.

Hot weather, low humidity and high winds were making it difficult for fire crews to subdue the flames, said Daniel Berlant, a Cal Fire spokesman.

"Our engines get right to where we think the head of the fire is, start to engage the fire and it spots ahead of it," Berlant said.

Residents of two roads in the area were advised to evacuate. The cause of the fire was under investigation.


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