LINVILLE, N.C. (AP) — Officials say a fire on the slopes of Grandfather Mountain has grown. The U.S. Forest Service said Tuesday 20% of the fire is contained.
A release revealed that flames are ravaging a remote part of the Lost Cove Wilderness Study Area 10 miles southeast of Linville near Bee Mountain.
On Tuesday, officials revealed the fire grew to 700 acres since Monday and is burning in the Wilson Creek watershed on the U.S. Forest Service Grandfather Ranger District in Avery County, North Carolina.
While light rainfall did bring with it some relief on Sunday, the fire continued to burn. Higher humidity and the rain allowed firefighters to protect private property near the Roseboro community.
The U.S. Forest Service issued an emergency closure for the Huntfish Falls Trail, Darkside Cliffs Trail, Lost Cove Loop Trail and the Timber Ridge Trail.
WCNC-TV reported that the cause of the fire remains under investigation, but U.S. Forest Service officials believe it to be caused by someone.
Forest Service spokesperson Lisa Jennings said the fire is in a remote area, so it is expected to grow within the containment area until there’s significant rainfall. Jennings said firefighters have protected structures, so they aren’t at risk.
The Linville Volunteer Fire Department said it had crews in the area on standby to protect structures from the fire reported on Friday in the Roseboro area.
Other responding agencies include 20 firefighters with the U.S. Forest Service and local fire departments from Collettsville and Linville.