• Approximately 1,500 black bears live in the national park.

    Great Smoky Mountains

    National Park NC,TN

Firewood Alert: Destructive Insects May Be Hitching A Ride!

The possession of firewood, whether hardwood or softwood, originating from a location for which a federal or state firewood quarantine is in effect is prohibited in Great Smoky Mountains National Park. This closure prohibits the movement of firewood into the park from counties adjacent to the park for which a federal or state quarantine is in place, even if the quarantine allows for movement within the county. Failure to comply may result in a citation or seizure of firewood. Please see the list of quarantined states and counties.

Firewood which is in its original packaging stamped with a USDA - APHIS - PPQ shield stating that the wood is certified under one or more sections of federal regulation 7 CFR 301 is allowed. Also firewood which is purchased from a park concessioner is allowed. Visit www.nature.org/firewoodmap for a map of local stores and businesses that sell certified firewood.


Proposed Regulation Change: Tree-killing insects and diseases can be transported into the park in firewood. The park is proposing to reduce this threat by changing regulations to allow only heat-treated wood to be brought into the park. If adopted, firewood which is not bundled and certified by the USDA or a state agency will be prohibited in the park beginning in March 2015.

Though the proposed regulation would not take effect until next spring, the park is asking visitors to switch to safe firewood now. Certified firewood is available from an increasing number of businesses outside the park and wood purchased from park concessioners comes from safe local sources. Visit www.nature.org/firewoodmap for a map of local stores and businesses that sell certified firewood. Additional information about proposed regulation. Questions or comments? Email us.


An infested log found in Tennessee. The serpentine markings on the wood are the feeding tunnels created by emerald ash borer larva.

NPS Photo

Destructive Insect Pests
Several types of destructive insects may be hiding in firewood campers bring from outside the park. The forests of Great Smoky Mountains National Park could be devastated by these insects. To prevent this from occurring, firewood cannot be brought into the park from quarantined states or counties.

Emerald ash borer has killed tens of millions of ash trees in North America since its discovery here in 2002. The insect is originally from Asia, but was accidentally introduced to North America. The adult beetles eat ash foliage but cause little damage. The larvae (the immature stage) feed on the inner bark of ash trees, disrupting the tree's ability to transport water and nutrients. More information about emerald ash borer is available from:

Asian longhorned beetle is native to Asia, but has been found in Ohio, Illinois, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and New York recently. Most Asian longhorned beetle infested trees have been in landscape settings so far. These beetles lay eggs on trees and their young bore through trees as they grow. Infested trees must be cut, chipped, and burned to prevent spread. More information about Asian longhorned beetle is available from:

Thousand Cankers Disease poses a serious threat to black walnut trees in the national park. The disease is caused by a non-native fungus which is transmitted by small twig beetles. For information about the disease, including a quarantine map, please visit:

Don't Move Firewood!

Visit the Don't Move Firewood! website for a wealth of information, including state-by-state updates on quarantines and threats, interactive games, entertaining videos, insect identification, and ways you can help stop the spread of these and other destructive pests.

For additional information about other introduced insects and diseases that threaten the park's forests, please visit:

Firewood is available for sale at most large campgrounds in the park and in many stores in surrounding communities. Visit www.nature.org/firewoodmap for a map of local stores and businesses that sell certified firewood. Firewood may not be brought into the park unless it bears the USDA-APHIS-PPQ certification or is purchased from a county that has no quarantine in effect. In addition, park regulations allow for collection of dead, fallen wood for campfires.

Quarantine Notice: Firewood quarantines are in effect in many states. Click for state and county listings.

Other quarantines may also apply. Please check with your local Agricultural Extension Agent or visit the links on this page to see if your county is affected by a quarantine. Please note that the park does not differentiate between hardwood and softwood firewood. If an area is quarantined, no firewood from that area can be brought into the park.

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