Season’s biggest fire beaten back by storm |

Season’s biggest fire beaten back by storm

Sierra Sun

One of this season’s largest wildfires in the Truckee area came just hours before last Wednesday’s winter storm hit the region.

High frontal winds, typical before a winter storm, kicked up what fire officials are guessing was an abandoned campfire just east of Floriston on Nov. 29.

The blaze burned approximately one acre just off of westbound Interstate 80 near the Floriston Bridge, before firefighters had contained the fire and rain started to come down.

“When the wind came up, the fire really took off,” said Truckee Fire Protection District Chief Mike Terwilliger. “We were pretty surprised. If it had stayed real windy and not rained it would have been a pretty big fire for this time of year.”

Truckee Fire, California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection and U.S. Forest Service personnel responded to the fire, which was reported around 6 a.m.

CDF Battalion Chief Bryce Keller said storms that hit the Truckee area don’t always reach the canyon as low as Floriston.

“It was typical of the fires we responded to during the course of the summer,” Keller said. “We weren’t sure the storm was going to reach the canyon. A lot of times storms don’t make it this far.”

The fire came after a long dry period and forest fuels were primed for ignition.

“Fortunately, the fire was well-contained by the initial attack crew,” Keller said.

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