Dobson Knob fire in McDowell update: Operations ramp down, firefighters have Easter service
NC Forest Service

Fire personnel started their day with the opportunity to attend a worship service led by Marion Police Department Chaplain Bob Ritter.

The reduced work force then began another work day on the Dobson Knob fire, which has greatly decreased in active flame and smoke. The current size remains at 1,760 acres and containment has increased to 85 percent. Suppression operations are rapidly ramping down as personnel on the line finish up rehab work and back-haul equipment and supplies. There were about 200 people assigned to the fire as of Sunday morning's briefing, but many were going through the demobilization process, finalizing paperwork and packing up to travel home or be reassigned to other fires. There are numerous wildfires ongoing in Florida and Georgia, and some fires in western North Carolina.

Smoke from the Dobson Knob fire has greatly diminished and the air quality has improved for the most of the WNC mountain region except for counties near the fire that remained at Code Yellow.

Due to the fire, trail closures remained in place on the Grandfather District of the Pisgah National Forest. The April 11 closure order includes a portion of the Mountains to Sea Trail along the edge of the fire. As fire activity along the trail subsides, firefighters will evaluate the trail for public safety and resource damage. Forest trails will remain closed for the coming days until evaluation and repairs are completed.