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Shenandoah National Park plans prescribed burn

Shenandoah National Park Fire Managers plan to burn 500 acres sometime between Wednesday April 4 and April 20, weather permitting.  The area is in the park’s south district, west of Jarman Gap and northeast of Waynesboro.

A prescribed burn is a planned fire.  A prescription is a set of conditions that considers the safety of the public and fire staff, weather, and the probability of meeting the burn objectives.  It is also sometimes called a “controlled burn.”

The Jarman Gap Prescribed Burn aims to reduce hazardous fuels and the threat of a major wildfire. Additionally, the fire will help to promote oak and pine regeneration, additional animal food sources and increased plant diversity.  The forest of chestnut oak and pitch, Virginia and table mountain pines provides valuable habitat for a variety of wildlife.

The plan is for the fire to mimic natural processes as much as possible. It will be lit in such a way that the fire will move fairly slowly down the ridges with low flames.  There will be smoke.  Some individual trees will burn, but the fire should travel mostly across the forest floor.

During the burn, one trail will be closed to the public, the Gasline Road Trail.

augusta free press
augusta free press