Uwharrie fire likely started by campfire
U.S. Forest Service officials say a fire that started last weekend in the Uwharrie National Forest was likely caused by an abandoned campfire at a remote campsite. The agency has completed an investigation into the cause of the fire. No suspect is in custody.
Forest visitors are reminded to fully extinguish all campfires before leaving their campsites.
The fire is 100 percent contained. The Forest Service continues clean-up operations that include erosion control measures. The agency is working to fully extinguish the fire. Rain in the next day or two could help in those efforts.
The fire, known as the Coolers Knob fire, was first reported around 7 p.m. on Feb. 11. Eighty percent of the fire was in the Birkhead Mountains Wilderness area of the national forest. Twenty percent was on private land.
The Birkhead Wilderness area (including all trails) remains closed to visitors until the Forest Service deems it safe to return. People who wish to visit the wilderness area should contact the Uwharrie District Ranger office at 910-576-6391 if they plan to hike the trails this weekend.
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