Firefighters Respond to multiple wildfires, Camp Daniel Boone Fire burning in Shining Rock Wilderness
ASHEVILLE, NC (April 4, 2020) — High fire danger and windy conditions across Western North Carolina and the NC piedmont led to multiple wildfires yesterday. US Forest Service firefighters are responding to two significant wildfires, including the Camp Daniel Boone Fire that is now burning into the Shining Rock Wilderness on the Pisgah National Forest.
The Camp Daniel Boone Fire started on private property off Little East Fork Road in Haywood County Friday afternoon, April 3. The fire is now burning in the Shining Rock Wilderness Area on the Pisgah Ranger District of Pisgah National Forest. The fire is estimated at 50 acres and is located near the Art Loeb Trail west of Deep Gap. Approx. 40 firefighters are responding from the North Carolina Forest Service and US Forest Service. NC Forest Service helicopters and air tankers made multiple water drops yesterday to try to slow the spread of the fire. A US Forest Service helicopter is on scene again today. The northern Art Loeb and Little East Fork trailheads are closed due to the fire and hiking to Deep Gap or the peak of Cold Mountain is discouraged.
The Cals Creek Fire is burning in east of Highway 23/441 in Macon County near Otto, NC. The fire is estimated at 30 acres. The fire started on private property and is now also burning on US Forest Service land in the Nantahala Ranger District of Nantahala National Forest. Approximately 25 firefighters from the NC Forest Service and US Forest Service are responding. A NC Forest Service helicopter was used for water drops yesterday.
The cause of both fires is under investigation.
State and federal firefighters responded to multiple additional wildfire starts across Western NC yesterday. US Forest Service firefighters also responded to a small fire on the Uwharrie National Forest in the NC Piedmont.
Fire danger is expected to remain high through the weekend. The North Carolina Forest Service issued a ban on all open burning for 32 Western North Carolina counties due to hazardous forest fire conditions. The burning ban went into effect at 5 p.m. Friday, April 3, and will remain in effect until further notice. For more information, visit ncforestservice.gov/news_pubs/newsdesk_2020.htm.
The US Forest Service urges the public to practice caution this weekend. The national forests are experiencing very high levels of visitation. Visitors are asked to follow guidance under the burn ban and to consider postponing their camping trips. Several Western NC counties have implemented overnight camping restrictions. Stay up to date on current national forest closures at: www.fs.usda.gov/goto/currentclosures.