Tasman fire: 200 Pigeon Valley residents returning home

Around 200 Pigeon Valley residents can now return home.

Civil Defence announced on Thursday that Pigeon Valley residents evacuated by the Tasman fire can return home after more than a week away. 

Fire conditions are still too dangerous for Redwood Valley residents to return home for longer than two hours a day, Civil Defence Controller Roger Ball says.

Residents of Eves Valley, Teapot Valley, Golden Hills still have restricted access to their homes.

Fire and Emergency New Zealand (FENZ) says the fire activity is low and firefighters have been making good progress overnight. 

A FENZ spokesperson told residents at a community meeting on Wednesday night that conditions are dry and hot on the hills.

"The fire is saying 'you know, I'm not over yet I'm still running this show' and there's still a fair bit of life in there."

A firefighter had to be hospitalised due to dehydration from fighting the blaze, but she's getting better now.

"I'm happy to say that she's recovering very well today, but it reflects the conditions people are working in up on the hill," the spokesperson said.

It will be a while before things go back to normal with firefighters expected to be fighting the blaze well into March, FENZ says.