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Originally published: 2013-11-12 15:57:53
Last modified: 2013-11-13 11:52:21

UPDATE: Wildfire grows in Linville Gorge area

by Staff Reports

UPDATE: Nov. 13, 2013

A wildfire in the Linville Gorge Wilderness area grew overnight from 40 acres to 100 acres, according to the U.S. Forest Service.


Approximately 40 U.S. Forest Service firefighters and others are working to contain the "Table Rock fire" in the Grandfather Ranger District of Pisgah National Forest.


The fire is about a quarter-mile southwest of Table Rock Mountain in the east-central part of the gorge. Firefighters are cleaning up existing roads, trails and existing firelines from previous fires to contain the wildfire. 


Zero percent of the fire is contained at this time. The fire burned actively through the night and is expected to grow in size over the next couple days, according to the U.S. Forest Service.
 
Firefighters continue to protect the Outward Bound base camp area, which is vacant. No other homes or structures are threatened at this time, and no injuries are reported. Trails near Table Rock Mountain and the Table Rock picnic area are closed.
 
An Incident Command Team will be in place by 6 p.m. Wednesday. The National Forests in North Carolina Forest Supervisor has approved the use of mechanized equipment, including leaf blowers and chainsaws, to suppress the wildfire in the wilderness area.


The Forest Service will use bulldozers outside the wilderness area, and two helicopters will also be used on the wildfire. A temporary flight restriction should be in place over the fire today to protect the safety of aviation assets assigned to the fire.


The cause of the fire is under investigation. Persons with information about individuals who may have been in this area last weekend are asked to call U.S. Forest Service Law Enforcement Officer Jason Crisp at (828) 652-2144.


The U.S. Forest Service is working with the N.C. Forest Service, Burke County Emergency Management, and N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission to suppress the fire.


ORIGINAL ARTICLE: Nov. 12, 2013

Approximately 20 U.S. Forest Service firefighters and others were working Tuesday afternoon to contain a 40-acre wildfire in the Linville Gorge Wilderness area of Pisgah National Forest.


The cause of the fire, dubbed the "Table Rock Fire," is under investigation, according to the Forest Service.


The fire is about a quarter-mile southwest of Table Rock mountain and was threatening a vacant Outward Bound base camp area.


No other homes or structures were threatened and no injuries had been reported as of mid-afternoon Tuesday.


Firefighters were creating fire lines to suppress the blaze, and an incident command team is expected to be in place by the end of the day Wednesday, according to the Forest Service. With that additional help, the total number of firefighters will rise to nearly 40.


Crews also have been approved to use mechanized equipment such as leaf blowers and chain saws within the wilderness area, as well as bulldozers and helicopters to help suppression.


The U.S. Forest Service is also working with the N.C. Forest Service, Burke County Emergency Management and the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission.


A prescribed burn scheduled for Tuesday in Burke County was postponed due to the weather conditions.