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Prescribed burns planned on the Grandfather and Appalachian Ranger Districts to reduce wildfire risk & improve wildlife habitat

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Last Updated on April 11, 2022 9:21 am

The U.S. Forest Service is planning to conduct prescribed burns on the Pisgah National Forest's Grandfather and Appalachian Ranger Districts on April 11th and 12th. A 2,700-acre prescribed burn is planned along the Blue Ridge Parkway near Curtis Creek Road on the Grandfather Ranger District, while a 189-acre burn is planned for Victor Road on the Appalachian Ranger District. Smoke impacts, area roadway closures, and detours/delays are anticipated. Impacted roadways and potential closures include the Blue Ridge Parkway, Victor Rd, Curtis Creek Rd, and Neals Creek Rd. The dispersed campsites on Victor Road will be closed and public access to the area will be restricted. Visitors are asked to plan their visit and travel routes accordingly to avoid the burn operations.

The dates for the burn and the actual number of acres burned will depend upon weather conditions. Burning days are changeable because the proper conditions are needed; wind and relative humidity are key factors in fire behavior, safety, and smoke control. Prescribed burning will only occur when environmental conditions permit. During the burns, proper personnel and equipment will be on site.  

All prescribed burns are thoroughly planned and analyzed by a team of specialists to ensure that wildlife, fisheries, rare plants and historic sites are not harmed. Habitat for a variety of wildlife species can be improved through carefully planned and executed prescribed burns. Regular burns promote the growth of plants that provide food for wildlife including important game animals such as deer and wild turkey.

Prescribed burning is an important and versatile forest management tool that can mimic natural fire disturbances and reduce underbrush and flammable vegetation, which is key to limiting wildfire risk. 

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