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Contact: Lauren Gurniewicz, 803-647-3969
Contact: Terri Hogan, 803-647-3960
Within the next 1-2 weeks Congaree National Park plans to complete two controlled burns on approximately 975 acres of park woodlands. The purpose of prescribed fire is to reduce hazardous fuels and the threat of wildfire to park neighbors, enhance habitat for the endangered red-cockaded woodpecker and restore fire in the natural system. The burns will likely take place the week of May 6, but could take place up to several weeks later based on site conditions, wind, relative humidity, fuel moisture, fire fighter availability.
There are two burn areas. One burn area is located along the park entrance road to the west, with the eastern boundary near Garrick Road. The other burn area is east of the southeastern bend of South Cedar Creek Road and south of Red Bluff Road. Smoke may be visible for several miles. Precautions have been taken to minimize any inconvenience to neighbors; however, smoke may drift into areas other than those immediately adjacent to the burn site. Certain park trails as well as the Longleaf and Bluff Campgrounds will be unavailable during the prescribed burn.
For visitors with camping permits:In the event that a burn is scheduled after a camping permit is issued, a uniformed park ranger will attempt to notify campers in person by visiting occupied campsites, calling the phone number provided by the permit holder, placing notices on car windshields, or placing notes on the door to tents. In addition, burn notices will be placed at the Harry Hampton Visitor Center desk and the campground information kiosk. For back country campers, a message will be left at the phone number provided by the permit holder.
If you have questions, concerns, or need additional information, please contact Chief of Integrated Resource Management Terri Hogan, 803 776-4396.