National Forests in North Carolina

Appalachian Ranger District

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Rainfall aids firefighters on Hurricane Ridge Fire, 40% contained

Mars Hill, NC, November 30, 2022 – Significant rainfall overnight and this morning aided firefighting efforts on the Hurricane Ridge Fire, which is now estimated at 700 acres and 40% contained.

The Hurricane Creek Fire has been burning since November 23 along Interstate 40 in the Harmon Den area on the US Forest Service Appalachian Ranger District in Haywood County, NC. The fire is located east of Interstate 40, south of Cold Springs Road (Exit 7) and north of Hurricane Creek Road. The fire is spreading east through the remote Hurricane Creek Drainage.

Yesterday, firefighters conducted successful burnout operations into the late evening hours. Burnout operations focused on reducing fuels near the southern edge of the fire off Hurricane Creek Road. These actions secured firelines to protect private property and structures just outside the fire area. Overnight, the fire received approximately 1 inch of rainfall, but specific totals were inconsistent across the area.

Today, firefighters are assessing fire progression and patrolling firelines. The fire is still producing smoke in pockets where heavy fuels were not fully extinguished. It is expected that some locations in the interior of the fire area will reignite as conditions dry with predicted windy and low humidity conditions over the next couple days. Fire managers will be conducting assessment of hot-spots today and tomorrow as conditions allow.

Haynes Road (FSRD #233 – locally called Hurricane Creek Road) and Brady Road (FSRD #3526) remain closed at this time. The public is asked to avoid recreating in the area as to not interfere with firefighting operation. 90 firefighters from the US Forest Service and North Carolina Forest Service are responding. The response effort is supported by Haywood County Emergency Management and the North Carolina Department of Transportation (DOT). Fire managers are assessing personnel needs based on assessment of fire risk in the coming days.

The cause of the Hurricane Ridge Fire remains under investigation. 

Photo: Hurricane Ridge fire as of November 30, 2022.


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