Appalachian National Scenic Trail to Implement Fire Restrictions from the US Route 33 crossing in Shenandoah National Park to Springer Mountain, GA.
HARPERS FERRY, W.V. (Nov. 17, 2016) – The National Park Service (NPS) and Appalachian Trail Conservancy (ATC) announce that fire restrictions are in place along the Appalachian National Scenic Trail (A.T.) from US Route 33 in Shenandoah National Park to the southern terminus at Springer Mountain, Georgia, taking effect at 8 a.m. on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2016. These fire restrictions include the NPS lands around McAfee Knob and Tinker Cliffs in Virginia. These restrictions are consistent with and incorporate existing fire bans already implemented by other land management agencies throughout the region. Due to exceptionally dry conditions in Georgia, North Carolina, Tennessee and southern Virginia, as well as the potential for extreme fire behavior, the restrictions listed below will be in effect until the southern portion of the A.T. receives sufficient precipitation.
Building, attending, maintaining or using an open fire anywhere on or along the A.T. is prohibited. This ban includes:
- All open air fires.
- Fires built in grates, grills, rings or pits in campgrounds, picnic areas, shelters and huts.
- The use of pressurized gas fuel camp stoves and backpacking stoves are allowed. Please visit the Appalachian Trail Updates page at appalachiantrail.org/updates for restrictions of other types of stoves in specific areas.
- In many areas, smoking of any kind is prohibited. Please visit appalachiantrail.org/updates for details about local restrictions.
These restrictions will better provide for public safety. The southern half of the A.T. and surrounding lands are significantly dry and the potential for wildland fires is high. Fire restrictions beginning Nov. 17 will remain in effect until conditions improve with significant rain or snow over time or when lifted by the responsible land management agency.
The over 67 miles of the A.T. are currently closed, from Dicks Creek Gap/U.S. 76 in Georgia to the Nantahala River/US19/US74 in North Carolina. Up-to-date information can be found on ATC’s Trail Updates page at www.appalachiantrail.org/updates.