ALPINE COUNTY (CBS SF/AP) — Fire crews south of Lake Tahoe were facing another grueling day of heat and extreme fire behavior along the state line as they battled the still growing Tamarack Fire Friday.
The Tamarack Fire south of Lake Tahoe grew about 7,000 acres Thursday to 58,417 acres as of Friday morning. The fire has burned more than 78 square miles of timber and head-high chaparral in national forest land. It erupted July 4 and was one of nearly two dozen blazes sparked by lightning strikes.READ MORE: UPDATE: Many in East Bay Still Without Power
ALSO READ: Incident information on Tamarack Fire
Though containment along the Carson River Road Corridor and portions of Diamond Valley Road were increased, authorities said crews continued to struggle on the east side of Hwy 395 near Holbrook Junction.
A spot fire in that area was estimated to have grown to 2,500 acres, establishing itself on the ridge northwest of Topaz Ranch Estates, a community in Douglas County, Nevada.
An additional 1,369 people were evacuated primarily from the Hwy 395 corridor, bringing the total number of those evacuated by the Tamarack Fire to 2,439.
Firefighters on the ground and aircraft will face more exceptionally difficult weather and fuel conditions on Friday. Temperatures were forecast to approach 90 degrees Fahrenheit.
Fire crews are anticipating that the weather will continue to be hot, dry and unstable. Minimum humidity will be 15-20% and southwest winds of 10-15 mph with gusts to 40 mph are predicted for Friday afternoon and evening along ridgetops.
Terrain driven winds were expected for most of the day, except for increasing northwest winds late in the afternoon and evening. Additionally, there is a chance of thunderstorms returning for the weekend and likely into early next week.
A fire crew from Truckee Meadows Fire & Rescue shared a terrifying clip late Thursday that showed a truck nearly overwhelmed by a fast-moving spot fire.READ MORE: Menlo Park Man Stabbed at Party
*MUST SEE* Close call as the crew of a Truckee Meadows Fire & Rescue brush engine escapes fire on both sides of an unpaved road in the wilderness triggered by a fast moving spot fire while supporting a firing operation on the #TamarakFire. #TMFR #Wildfire #FireSeaaon2021 pic.twitter.com/gb2I5C4m23
— Truckee Meadows Fire & Rescue (@TMFPD) July 23, 2021
The clip shows the truck surrounded by towering flames on all sides as it traveled on an unpaved road in the wilderness. Luckily, the crew was able to drive to safety.
Clips of crews in harrowing situations caused by the Tamarack and other wildfires are being posted to social media more frequently as the fire season intensifies. On Thursday, the UC Davis Fire Chief shared a similar video from the inside of a fire truck’s cab that he described as “heart-stopping.”
UC Davis Fire Chief Nathan Trauernicht also shared a daytime clip on Thursday that gave viewers an idea of the scope of the Tamarack Fire with the flames and smoke visible on a nearby hillside towering over a threatened barn in the foreground on the eastern side of the fire.
Daytime video from @ucdavisfire Brush 34 of the Yolo County strike team as they enter a housing development yesterday to protect homes from the #TamarakFire. This is Division “O” on the eastern side of the fire. @ucdavis #ucdavis pic.twitter.com/Af4IxLxCTp
— Nathan Trauernicht (@FireChiefT) July 22, 2021
A total of 1,353 fire personnel are currently staffing the Tamarack Fire. The fire in Alpine County has destroyed at least 10 buildings.MORE NEWS: One Dead, Three Wounded In Early Sunday Morning Shooting In Oakland's Uptown Neighborhood
© Copyright 2021 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.