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Prescribed Burn Planned at Crowders Mountain State Park

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Michael F. Easley, Governor
William G. Ross, Jr., Secretary

Release Note: 
Charlie Peek
Release Date: 
Monday, January 15, 2007

Prescribed Burn Planned at Crowders Mountain State Park

RALEIGH -- The N.C. Division of Parks and Recreation will conduct a prescribed burn at Crowders Mountain State Park in Gaston County between Jan. 22 and Feb. 2, according to Park Superintendent Larry Hyde.

The burn will be conducted in the summit area of the Crowders Mountain, and some areas of the park will be closed to the public during the event.

Prescribed burns are used as a resource management tool by the state parks system. Some plant communities and animal species rely on periodic fire for their existence. For thousands of years, lightning ignited the fires necessary to maintain the habitats of these species. But in the last century, fire suppression, road construction and development have disrupted the natural fire cycles.

The prescribed burn will also reduce the amount of potential wildfire fuel in an area on Crowders Mountain where lightning strikes and wildfires have been prevalent. The prescribed burn will help protect the park's resources and neighboring landowners if lightning, arson or carelessness spark a wildfire.

The low-intensity, prescribed burn will be conducted in cooperation with the N.C. Division of Forest Resources. In order to minimize smoke and assure the fire is controlled, the prescribed burn will only be carried out under strictly defined weather conditions of a fire management plan.

On the selected day, the burn will begin in the late morning and will end by late afternoon. Follow-up operations could last for several days. Until the park staff determines the area is safe for visitors, all areas on or around the Crowders Mountain will be closed to the public, including the Linwood Road Access, Rocktop, Backside and Tower trails and the portions of Crowders Trail east of Sparrow Springs Road.

For further information, call the park office at (704) 853-5375. Also, additional information on techniques of prescribed burns as a resource management tool can be found on the parks system's Web site at