Parts of South Lake Tahoe are now under evacuation orders after spending the weekend under evacuation warnings, and the Sierra-at-Tahoe ski resort remains a staging area for the firefighting effort.
As of Monday morning, the Caldor Fire had burned 177,260 acres, and was 14% contained, down from 19% on Sunday morning. New evacuation orders came to most of the city of South Lake Tahoe and the rim of the lake from Emerald Bay to the Nevada state line, as Bay Area News Group reports.
The fire continues moving toward the Tahoe basin, potentially becoming the first wildfire to reach South Lake Tahoe since the 2007 Angora Fire, which destroyed hundreds of homes in the area.
Most large buildings at the Sierra-at-Tahoe resort remained standing as of this morning, per Bay Area News Group, and the resort continued serving as a staging area for Cal Fire — with snow-making machines employed to spray water onto the buildings themselves.
The National Weather Service says that there will be increasing west-to-southwest winds today that will further push the Caldor Fire toward the basin, though containment efforts continue to try to save homes and businesses in South Lake Tahoe and prevent the fire from beginning to encircle the lake. A Red Flag Warning for the region remains in effect until 11 p.m. Tuesday.
The Caldor Fire began around midnight on August 14, and its initial growth in the area of Omo Ranch, near Grizzly Flats, was called "unprecedented" by fire officials. Within days it would grow to over 100,000 acres, and begin its steady creep toward the Tahoe basin, destroying 470 structures to date, and threatening many thousands more.
The full list of new evacuation orders from Monday morning is below:
- The section from Emerald Bay north to the Placer County line in Tahoma, extending west to the border of Desolation Wilderness
- The area from Sawmill Road at Lake Tahoe Boulevard, extending north to Pope Beach, and along the water’s edge to Eagle Point west to Desolation Wilderness across Emerald Bay
- The area of the Elks Club along Highway 50 and the west side of Pioneer trail. This area includes the streets of Hekpa Drive, excluding the residences west of the airport. It also includes all the residences accessed from Jicarilla Drive, Washoan Boulevard and Glen Eagles Road; as well the neighborhoods of Cold Creek Trail, High Meadows and Marshall Trail
- Gardner Mountain, northwest of the South Lake Tahoe Airport and west of Highway 50/Lake Tahoe Boulevard and the Highway 89 intersection to include the South Lake Tahoe High School, Tahoe Verde, and the streets accessed from 5th and 15th streets south of Highway 89.
- The area east of the Pioneer Trail to the Alpine County line stopping south of the Heavenly Ski Resort, including all residences off the Pioneer Trail
Top image: A snow machine blows water on a structure at Sierra-at Tahoe ski resort as the Caldor Fire moves through the area on August 30, 2021 in Twin Bridges, California. The Caldor Fire has burned over 165,000 acres, destroyed over 650 structures and is currently 13 percent contained. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)