Winter Road Status
During winter, roads in the park may close due to snow and ice, especially at night when water from melting refreezes on roads. For road status information please call (865) 436-1200 ext. 631 or follow road updates at http://twitter.com/SmokiesRoadsNPS. More »
Prescribed Burn Near Wears Valley
Contact: Public Affairs Office, (865) 436-1207
April 10 Update: Due to forecasted high wind gusts tonight and tomorrow, the prescribed burn at Wear Cove Gap is cancelled today.
April 9 Release: Fire management officials at Great Smoky Mountains National Park have announced plans to conduct a 178-acre prescribed burn just inside the park boundary south of Wears Valley in Sevier County, TN. The burn will take place on Wednesday, April 10, 2013, weather permitting.
Great Smoky Wildland Fire Module, a National Park Service crew of wildland fire specialists, will be conducting the prescribed burn to reduce the build-up of flammable brush inside the Park boundary in order to reduce the risk of an uncontrolled fire. The planned burn area is bounded by Wear Cove Gap Road, Indian Camp Branch, Little River Road, and the Park boundary. In preparation for the burn, Wildland Fire Module personnel have been clearing brush and leaf litter along the Park boundary and Indian Camp Branch, which will serve as fire control lines to keep the fire within its planned boundaries. Park fire fighters and cooperator fire engines from Wears Valley Fire Department and Townsend Fire Departments will be available to patrol the lines and suppress any fire that threatens the containment lines.
This unit was burned successfully in 2009 as a part of a multi-year plan to reduce fuel loadings in the Wildland Urban Interface (WUI) in Sevier County. The Park also participates in a national educational program called "FireWise" that provides information and technical assistance to communities on developing strategies that decrease fire risk to personal property. More information on the FireWise program can be found at: www.firewise.org.
Closures for firefighter and public safety include Roundtop Trail. Wear Cove Gap Road will remain open, but park visitors should be aware of fire personnel and equipment along the roadway. In addition, residents should expect smoke in the area.
Did You Know?
Money to buy the land that became Great Smoky Mountains National Park was raised by individuals, private groups, and even school children who pledged their pennies. In addition, the Laura Spelman Rockefeller Memorial Fund donated $5 million to create the park. More...