Slink fire burning south of Topaz adds to Carson Valley smoke |

Slink fire burning south of Topaz adds to Carson Valley smoke

A wall of smoke in Carson Valley at around 4 p.m. Friday.
Kurt Hildebrand

Genoa, Nev. — Smoke from the Slink fire blew north into Carson Valley on Friday bringing unhealthy air quality levels for much of the afternoon. 

Visibility at Minden-Tahoe Airport dropped to three miles for about an hour on Friday morning. 

The airport recorded a high temperature of 99 degrees, adding heat to the haze.

The fire was at 16,250 acres at last report and actively burning into the Carson-Iceberg Wilderness and south away from Coleville and Walker.

On Friday, the fire crowned and spotted, continuing to burn on the northern and southern flanks.

The fire is burning in the Silver King Creek drainage.  

Fire Operations Planning Section Chief Mac McFarland said line building has focused on the north flank where it is visible from Highway 89.

Eight hand crews are working on the southern end of the fire to stop it before it reaches Highway 108 and Pickel Meadows Mountain Warfare Training Center, McFarland said.

Helicopters are filling buckets at Heenan Lake near Monitor Pass.

The fire is burning into the Carson Iceberg Wilderness where tinder-dry timber is burning in difficult and dangerous terrain. Fuels on the fire include mixed pines, piñon-juniper, sagebrush and grass.

Set by lightning, the fire has been burning in Slinkard Valley just over the ridge from Highway 395 south of Topaz Lake since Aug. 30.

Nearly 620 firefighters have a line around 15 percent of the fire with anticipated containment on Sept. 20.

Nearly a dozen helicopters are working the fire, transporting firefighters and cargo to the front lines and dousing the blaze with water drops.