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Fire Burns in Shenandoah National Park

This week firefighters from the National Park Service and Virginia Department of Forestry worked to extinguish a backcountry wildland fire burning near Millers Head of Shenandoah National Park. According to officials, the fire was naturally caused and began on the afternoon of September 8. 

Firefighters continue to establish a fire line to contain the fire, on September 9. Courtesy of National Park Service.

“It has been an extremely dry season and temperatures are still high,” Shenandoah National Park officials posted on their Facebook in between the active fire’s updates. “Wildfires are becoming an increasing threat, so stay informed about fire advisories in your area and in Shenandoah National Park.”

Photo courtesy of the National Park Service

The flames ignited on steep, rocky, and heavily vegetated terrain in an area far from facilities or trails, making containment of the fire difficult. But firefighters were able to successfully create a fire line around the fire’s perimeter, preventing it from spreading outside of its roughly two-and-a-half-acre patch. As of two days ago, firefighters were continuing to monitor the fire and extinguish hot spots throughout the area to prevent the reignition of trees, grass, or other natural forest debris.

“It’s important to be fire-safe,” Shenandoah National Park officials stated. “Fires are prohibited in the park except in park-built fire grates in picnic areas and campgrounds. Be certain fires are fully extinguished before leaving. Bring a container to carry water and something to stir with. To extinguish a fire, douse the fire with water, then stir it to spread the coals until it has cooled completely.” 

View of smoke from the Millers Head Fire, September 9. Photo courtesy of the National Park Service.

NPS webcam view showing the fire’s smoke column and low-lying clouds. The smoke column can be seen on the left side of the photo. September 9.  Photo courtesy of the National Park Service

Cover photo: Millers Head Fire, September 9. Photos courtesy of the National Park Service

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