High Country residents in Watauga and Avery are noticing the appearance of drift smoke in the area this afternoon. The smoke is coming from the Linville Gorge fire which started on Thursday. As of Friday the fire was estimated at 75 acres and 0% contained. Complete information from the Friday update from the US Forest service is available at this link.
The good news is rain is in the forecast for tonight and the weekend, which should help with both the fire and drift smoke. Until then people with difficulty breathing are urged to stay inside if possible.