By Jesse Wood
Dec. 19, 2013. The U.S. Forest Service announced yesterday it planned to conduct a prescribed burn in northern Caldwell County in the Pisgah National Forest on Thursday, and this afternoon a smoky haze floats over the High Country.
“It’s very smoky,” Canyons owner Bart Conway said, adding that the fire has pretty much “obscured” the fantastic view that Canyons is famous for this afternoon.
The 200-acre burn in the Thunderhole Creek area was planned to reduce hazardous fuels and protect nearby communities from a “catastrophic wildfire,” according to a release announcing the burn.
Smoke is noticeable in Boone, too. The release added that smoke may be visible in Caldwell, Avery, and Watauga counties, including the towns of Blowing Rock, Boone, Linville, Foscoe and Collettsville.
“Drivers should use caution when traveling in these areas as there may be smoke and firefighters on the roads. The Forest Service will conduct modeling to ensure appropriate weather conditions and reduce the effects of smoke,” the release noted.
“The following partners are assisting with the project: North Carolina Forest Service; Blue Ridge Parkway; Blowing Rock Fire Department; The Nature Conservancy; and Collettsville Volunteer Fire Department.”
For more information on restoring fire to the mountains, visit http://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/nfsnc/home/?cid=STELPRDB5407778