Alpine fire at 99-percent containment |

Alpine fire at 99-percent containment

A couple riding a tandem bicycle descend Ebbetts Pass on June 28, the first day it was re-opened following the Washington Fire closure.
Brad Coman |

Genoa, Nev. — With all the rain and a line around 99 percent of the 17,790-acre Washington Fire, the Alpine County blaze that once threatened Markleeville is now barely smoldering.

The number of firefighters battling the blaze is down to 335, mostly in the nine hand crews cutting line through the rugged terrain. Three helicopters and two engines are supporting the ground troops.

Leviathan Mine Road is closed as are Forest Service lands in the vicinity of the fire.

“The fire area received an abundance of rain over the past 48 hours, thus allowing fire crews the opportunity to make good progress towards containment,” according to fire spokesman Jose Acosta. “Fire crews will continue to construct the remaining fire line and mop up hot spots along the perimeter.”

The official containment date remains July 31.

Isolated portions of the fire on the eastern and southern flanks adjacent to the Carson Iceberg Wilderness will continue to smolder until the burn out on their own due to difficult terrain and little potential for growth.