Where there is smoke; prescribed burn slated at Cumberland Gap Park

Published 4:50 pm Wednesday, March 2, 2022

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If you see smoke rising from Cumberland Gap National Historical Park in the coming weeks, it may be resource management in action. The park’s fire management team will be conducting a prescribed burn on Dark Ridge, just west of Sugar Run Overlook Road (KY-988), sometime in the next few weeks.

This controlled fire is part of the park’s overall Fire Management Strategy to conduct periodic, low intensity fires that reduce the amount of fallen trees and debris. This reduces the fuel available to and the danger posed by any wildfires that might occur in that area.

Controlled fires must be done during specific weather conditions, so the exact date of the planned fire will depend on the upcoming weather. Park officials want to make sure local residents are notified and don’t become alarmed when they see smoke in the Dark Ridge and Sugar Run Overlook Road area.

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During the controlled burn, those traveling on Sugar Run Overlook Road (KY-988) may experience minor traffic delays. Information will be posted and updated on the park’s website, Facebook, and Twitter platforms.

Cumberland Gap National Historical Park preserves the first great gateway to the west, where Daniel Boone and over 300,000 settlers crossed the Appalachians. Situated where Tennessee, Kentucky and Virginia meet, the park includes over 24,000 acres with more than 85 miles of trails and over 14,000 acres of recommended wilderness. The visitor center, located in Middlesboro, Kentucky, is open daily from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission to the park is free.