Persistant Drought Increases Fall Fire Danger In The Allegheny Highlands

Warm Springs, VA – Persistent Drought Increases Fall Fire Potential. This is District Ranger Patrick Sheridan with the monthly report from the James River and Warm Springs Ranger Districts.

Above normal fire potential will develop over the Appalachians from September through November. High humidity will keep fire potential low for much of the Southeast during August. Drier conditions are expected during the fall. The fall fire season in the Southeast is highly dependent on the timing of rain in conjunction with leaf drop.

Periodic rainfall, even if it is below average, will prevent a widespread fall fire season. If rain events are spaced more than 7-10 days apart, fire activity will increase significantly, especially if dry cold fronts occur.

Nationally, the fire season is below normal. Approximately 2 million acres have burned to date, only half of the 10 year average of 4 million. Approximately 38,000 fires have occurred so far compared to the 10 year average of 53,000 for this date.

Campground renovation at Lake Moomaw’s Bolar Mountain recreation area was completed in early July and all of the recreation activities are once again fully available to the public. Campground reconstruction began in the fall of 2009 and resumed in March, 2010 at Lake Moomaw after a long delay due to winter weather. New bath house and shower facilities are in place at the beach, and Campgrounds 1, 2, and 3.

The Morris Hill Campground at Lake Moomaw will close for the season on September 7, 2010, a bit earlier than normal. The Army Corp of Engineers manages the water system at the camp ground and has maintenance and repairs of the system scheduled for this time.

Story By

Heather Niday

Heather is our Program Director and Traffic Manager. She started with Allegheny Mountain Radio as a volunteer deejay. She then joined the AMR staff in February of 2007. Heather grew up in the Richmond, Virginia, area and now lives in Arbovale, West Virginia with her husband Chuck. Heather is a wonderful flute player, and choir director for Arbovale UMC. You can hear Heather along with Chuck on Tuesday nights from 6 to 8pm as they host two hours of jazz on Something Different.

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