Monongahela National Forest
U.S. Forest Service
200 Sycamore Street
Elkins, WV 26241
ELKINS, W.Va., August 9, 2019 – Monongahela National Forest fire officials plan to burn wood debris piles in the next few weeks on about two acres at Cheat Summit Fort, the location of a Civil War Union encampment 6.5 miles northwest of Bartow. Later this fall they will conduct a prescribed burn on about nine acres to control vegetation in the same area.
The burning of the debris piles will enhance views of two forts from the observation platform. This is an ongoing project with more debris piles to be created and burned at a later time.
The nine-acre prescribed burn will help to control grasses and other vegetation, and enhance interpretive opportunities of historic earthworks that date from the Civil War. The area was last burned in 2013. Prescribed fire is one tool that forest managers use to keep forests healthy by reducing vegetation and nonnative invasive species.
“The actual timing of the prescribed burn and the pile-burning will be determined by specific set of prescriptions that include parameters for smoke, wind speed, temperature and humidity on any given day,” said Walt Walter, Fire Management Officer for Monongahela National Forest.
The area will be closed to the public during burning, and may be closed for several days afterward to ensure public safety. Signs will be posted on roads near all prescribed burn areas before and during burning. Residents and forest visitors may see and smell smoke for several days. If you encounter smoke on the highway, slow down, turn on your vehicle’s lights and drive appropriately for the conditions.
Local 911 centers and radio stations will be alerted to burn activities ahead of time. When burning begins information will be available at https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/.
For additional information contact the Greenbrier Ranger District at (304) 456-3335.
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