Thursday update: Clear Creek fire at 300 acres |

Thursday update: Clear Creek fire at 300 acres

Even as the wind picked up on Thursday afternoon and threatening clouds eased north, there were just a few wisps of smoke left where the night before orange flames of the Clear Creek fire lit up the ridge.

At about the same time across Carson Valley, the National Weather Service was reporting its Doppler radar was showing rain at an inch an hour over the Bison fire burn.

The dichotomy of thunderstorms sets fires in some places and drops deluges in others.

The 300-acre Clear Creek fire continued to smolder in light brush on the ridge between Jacks Valley and Clear Creek Canyon, burning mostly northwest, as of 2 p.m. Thursday.

Three helicopters and hand crews worked together to hold a couple of fires that burned over their line, which was a quarter of the way around the fire.

The picture on Wednesday night was far more dramatic with voluntary evacuations in place for 40 homes between Jacks Valley and Clear Creek roads.

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Flames were visible from around Carson Valley starting moments after a lightning bolt set the fire at around 6:50 p.m.

Dry sage caught immediately and the fire grew from 20 acres to 100 in a little more than an hour.

Area residents parked and watched the fire burn west along the ridge, torching an occasional tree. But mostly it stayed in the brush. By Thursday morning, the ridge, normally white, had a slight charcoal tinge. No one has been injured on the fire and no homes or outbuildings lost.

As of 2 p.m. Thursday 150 firefighters from East Fork Fire District, Carson City, the U.S. Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, Nevada Division of Forestry and the Bureau of Indian Affairs were working on the fire.

A 40-acre fire near Swauger Creek just north of Highway 395 near Bridgeport was threatening structures. Fires were also reported in the Pine Nuts near Ruby Hill Mine and near Burnside Lake. Both those fires were quickly extinguished.

At 2:19 p.m. the National Weather Service reported pea-sized hail and heavy rainfall at Holbrook Junction.

Public Information Officer Mark Struble said that firefighters expect more fire starts from lightning strikes up and down the Sierra Front.

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