Friday, April 1, 2011

Shenandoah after the Fire

On a windy day in February I was out scouting the back roads of the Shenandoah Valley with my friends Greg and Dan.   During the day we noticed that a small area of Shenandoah National Park was on fire.  The high winds soon spread the fire across 2000 acres of the park.   A couple of weeks later I decided to do a little hiking and survey the damage.  I could not escape the burnt smell of the forest but surprisingly the damage appeared minor.  Some of the living trees had a little damage to the bark, but most of the fuel for the fire appeared to be the dead wood that litters the forest floor.   Considering the amount of fuel that litters the forest floor in Shenandoah, I wonder if one day a lightning strike or perhaps someone’s carelessness will do far greater damage to this park. 
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