RENO — Crews working a fire in the wilderness on the edge of Reno say they should have it fully contained by Friday thanks to a Sierra storm that dumped rain and up to 2 inches of snow on parts of the blaze that has burned about a square mile northeast of Lake Tahoe.
About 50 firefighters were dismissed from the lines Wednesday, but about 200 remained on the scene and began mop-up work around the fire’s old perimeter.
No homes are threatened. A firefighter suffered a minor eye injury earlier in the week, but no one else has been hurt, according to the Sierra Front Dispatch Center.
Fire supervisors continued to estimate containment at 65 percent Wednesday afternoon, but that figure was expected to rise by nightfall with more rain in the forecast.
The fire broke out about 11 p.m. Saturday in the Mount Rose Wilderness of the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest. The fire is believed to be human-caused because there was no lightning at the time. Firefighting costs have exceeded $700,000.
Three helicopters were dropping water and shuttling crews up and down the rugged mountainside a few miles from the residential foothills of southwest Reno.
“They are improving the fire line in addition to starting the mop-up and suppression repair of the firefighting efforts,” Sierra Front spokesman Todd Chaponot said in a statement Wednesday afternoon.
The intention is to help minimize erosion where the fire burned through just over a square mile of timber, mountain brush and understory grasses, he said.
“Activities include scattering vegetative debris and dirt over the fire line as well as installing light water bards to channel water runoff,” Chaponot said.