Sunday, May 1, 2016

Shenandoah Wildfire Contained - Skyline Drive and Appalachian Trail Have Reopened

Located in Shenandoah National Park's south district, the Rocky Mountain Fire was first reported on Saturday, April 16th at 1:15pm. When firefighters first arrived on the scene, the fire was approximately 70 acres in size, and growing quickly and too intense for a direct attack. Firefighters instead focused on evacuating hikers and backpackers and ordered additional firefighters and equipment to the scene. On Friday, April 29th, the fire was 100% contained and the closed section of the park's Skyline Drive reopened at 6:00 p.m. The Temporary Flight Restriction (TFR) was lifted on Friday April 29th. The section of the Appalachian Trail closed by the fire was reopened at noon on Saturday, April 30th. Several other trails were reopened the same day, but some trails remain closed.

The fire burned in a combination of mountain laurel, pine, and oak forests. The area contained heavier than average leaf litter and duff. The region was 3 to 4 inches below normal precipitation. In total, the fire burned 10,326 acres.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

The Southern Area Red Incident Management Team transferred command of the fire back to Shenandoah National Park and a type 4 team, Charlie Rudacille, Incident Commander.

Here are the trails that remain closed in Shenandoah National Park at this time:

Rockytop Trail
Rocky Mount Trail
Big Run Loop
Gap Run Trail
Austin Mountain Trail
Onemile Run Trail
Lewis Peak Trail
Brown Mountain Trail
Patterson Ridge Trail
Big Run Portal Trail
Madison Run Spur
Rocky Mountain Run Trail


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