Information and maps of five wildfires in Georgia and North Carolina, Nov. 14, 2016

fire maps Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee

Above: The map shows the location of some of the larger wildfires currently burning in Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee.

There are still dozens of wildfires burning in the southern United States, primarily in Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee. Firefighters have slowed the progress of many of them but others are still spreading. The weather on Sunday was not quite as conducive to extreme fire behavior, but most areas are still extremely dry and have not had significant precipitation in weeks.

The weather forecast for the Asheville, NC area through Saturday, November 12, calls for more of the same weather — moderate winds, daily high temperatures in the 60s, and relative humidities in the 80s at night and the 30s in the afternoon.

Below are some statistics for the active fires in the Southern Geographic Area:

  • 73 active fires
  • 109,563 cumulative acres
  • 103 hand crews assigned
  • 242 engines
  • 19 helicopters
  • 3,492 personnel

Here is a look at five of the more active blazes:

Party Rock Fire

map party rock fire
Map of the perimeter of the Party Rock Fire at 11 p.m. ET November 13, 2016.

The Party Rock Fire has been burning just north of Lake Lure, North Carolina since November 5. It has blackened 3,457 acres and required evacuations in the Chimney Rock community. On Saturday and Sunday it grew by 574 acres, with most of the additional acres being on the southwest and northwest sides.

Tellico Fire

map Tellico Fire
Map of the perimeter of the Tellico Fire at 11 p.m. ET November 13, 2016.

The Tellico Fire three miles south of Almond, North Carolina expanded by 3,791 acres over the weekend and now stretches across 13,676 acres after merging with another fire, the Ferebee Fire. It spotted across the Little Tennessee River to the east, but that spot was contained at about 100 acres. U.S. Highway 19 on the west side of the fire was closed on Sunday.

Rock Mountain Fire

map party rock fire
Map of the perimeter of the Rock Mountain Fire at 11 p.m. ET November 13, 2016.

The Rock Mountain Fire in the northeast corner of Georgia has been very active in recent days, growing by 1,000 acres on Sunday to a total of 4,100, spreading about 1/2 mile each day. Due to the aggressive growth on Sunday all firefighting resources were assigned to structure protection; so far no structures have been destroyed but 54 remain threatened. On Sunday it was most active on the northwest and northeast sides.

Tatum Gulf Fire

map Tatum Gulf fire
Map of the perimeter of the Tatum Gulf Fire at 8 p.m. ET November 13, 2016.

The Tatum Gulf Fire is just east of the Alabama/Georgia state line 15 miles south of Trenton, Georgia. It has burned into the 500-acre Lookout Mountain Fire which straddles the state line. The total combined size is now 1,325 acres, with 1,150 of those acres being added on Saturday or Sunday. On Sunday it was most active on the west and north sides.

Rough Ridge Fire 

map Rough Ridge Fire
Map of the perimeter of the Rough Ridge Fire at 8 p.m. ET November 13, 2016.

The Rough Ridge Fire in north-central Georgia has burned to within a few hundred feet of the Tennessee state line. It has been very active over the last two days, growing by 2,475 acres for a new total of 19,411 acres. Smoke in the area on Sunday made the use of firefighting aircraft impossible. The fire has been burning for almost a month, and some areas that burned weeks ago are re-burning as leaves fall off the hardwood trees. The leaves have covered some control lines which reduces their ability to stop the fire’s spread as the areas burn again.

For the latest articles at Wildfire Today about wildfire smoke check out the articles tagged “smoke”.

Author: Bill Gabbert

After working full time in wildland fire for 33 years, Bill Gabbert now writes about it from the Black Hills. Google+

54 thoughts on “Information and maps of five wildfires in Georgia and North Carolina, Nov. 14, 2016”

  1. Hi Bill, L
    I love your content, especially the combination of commentary with the topographic maps. Are you going to publish updates on the Georgia fires? We live in Alpharetta in Fulton County, north of Atlanta, and I’m trying to figure out if any of the fires are likely to threaten our home.

    1. Bill, thanks for following the page updates. While you are in the drought stricken area of Georgia, the suburbs of Atlanta are at no risk from the current wild fires.

    1. I’m Planning a trip from lawrenceville, ga to gatlinburg, tn on monday, november 21st. I usually go through dillard, ga and through cherokee, nc. Are there better alternatives based on the forest fires/

  2. Hi,
    I live in Macon, not worried about us. However, my Mother in law lives in Young Harris and she’s not taking calls. And we are concerned because she’s 10 mins North of Blairsville.

    Thanks,
    Tricia

  3. Really 103 fire crews working on these fires. I would say yeah, let’s get more young people involved. Load up some ATV-trailers with bags of sand, dirt and water and lets get these fires out.

  4. We’ve booked a log cabin at Pine Shore Circle in Gainesville, GA 30501 – wasn’t planning on having a smoked turkey, any thoughts / comments / advice?

      1. My daughter lives in Flowery Branch GA…close to Gainesville, but closer to Oakwood GA. I’m not sure exactly where you are going, but my daughter said that the smoke is really bad…The Governor issued a level 2 drought no fountains can use water, no car washes and they can only water outside 2 days a week. Restaurants are only bringing water is asked.

    1. No problems in Gainesville….I live here. Some days are hazy from smoke drift, but not enough to interfere with activities.

  5. We are set to come from Florida to Sugar Grove just north of Boone for a vacation Thanksgiving week. Any insight on issues we would see there would be greatly appreacited including air quality. thanks a bunch

    1. No fires currently around Blue Ridge and the Aska Wilderness Area, more towards Cohutta Wilderness and Jack’s River areas, but smoke continues to create a dirty air haze. I live 20 miles southeast of Blue Ridge, on Coopers Creek. We have had smoke for two weeks now. Still beautiful, though.

    2. I live in Ellijay and my mother lives in Mineral Bluff, Ga. Smoke is bad at times. We are staying indoors as must as possible. Blue Ridge is about 15 miles North of me and they are smokey days still ahead.

    3. I live seven miles south of Blue Ridge and left yesterday due to the heavy smoke. I’m completely healthy, avid exerciser – but the smoke was just too much. Severe eye burning, throat felt parched, chest was tight- could not even open the doors and it was still overtaking the inside of my cabin. Even my dog was gagging. I’m a nurse- don’t take your health for granted. I left and am staying with friends in Atlanta. You can’t be outdoors to do anything.

    1. Just smoke, but lots of it and a dirty cloud haze. No current risk to the Ellijay and Aska Wilderness area, east northeast of Ellijay.

    2. I live in Ellijay, in the Chattahoochee National Forrest. The smoke is hit or miss, depending on the direction of the wind. Yesterday was fine. Today is smokey. It’s been that way for the past month.

  6. finally a useful website to pinpoint wildfires,unlike the national weather service,the forest service and noaa websites, THANKS.

    1. Just came from Pigeon Forge/Gatlinberg yesterday (Tues. the 22nd) and roads are all fine up Hwy. 441. Smoky as you go over Newfound Gap…so sad to see. Crowds are full force in both towns though!

  7. I live in Morganton NC on Pleasant View Loop. I am very concern about the South Mountain Fire that is about 12 miles from our home. I raise about 20 Service dogs and would need time to move them. With the weekend and Gusty winds coming how likely is it this fire would put us in danger where we live? How much of a advance notice is given to leave? I appreciate your imput. Thanks

    1. We live 3 miles north of Unicoi Park. Skies have been a beautiful blue lately but depends on the direction of the wind. We haven’t seen much smoke in this area up to this point, Fri Nov. 18.

    1. My family has planned Thanksgiving at a cabin in the Blowing Rock/Boone area. Since we are all traveling from various states we need to know if we need to cancel this trip due to the fires and smoke. What do you suggest?

  8. My family has a planned trip in Pigeon Ford, TN for Thanksgiving; does anyone know if the fires affected that area? How’s the air quality there? Family members are traveling from IL; GA, SC and MS. Thanks in advance for any information anyone can provide.

    1. It depends on current air currents, but my husband and I just returned from a Pigeon Forge vacation (11/15-11/17) and had a great time, both indoors and outdoors. The worst we experienced reminded us of the subtle remnants of a cold pine campfire. There was a slight pine smoky smell from time to time and sometimes there was a smoky haze over the distant mountains (like fog), but it was brief and not too uncomfortable for breathing. If you have asthma / allergies / etc, though, please bring extra medication. We needed our medicine more than we usually do.

  9. We have booked a cabin in the Gattlinburg, Pigeon Forge area for Christmas and New Years. They are talking about these fires possibly burning into March. Anyone know anything about this area?

    1. We are set to go to Gatlinburg day after Thanksgiving, we are in Ohio, will the smoke be too bad crossing Blue Ridge mountains to go?

    2. Can’t predict that far ahead, but it was definitely crowded and business as usual this week in both towns. From what I have read the fires anywhere close to there are 50% contained.

    1. Did you go to Murphy? My sister lives in Murphy… she says she’s okay but she doesn’t like to worry us. How was it? Close?

  10. We own a home in Rabun County 2 miles west of Dillard, GA. We are in a “prepare to evacuate” state because we are threatened by the Rock mountain fire. The wind is predicted to blow out to the NW for the next 2 days so it does not look good. Our dream retirement place with lots of sweat equity invested. Lots of friends near by. Praying for it to pass us by. Rain would be a God send, but I don’t see it coming.

  11. I own property in Big Buck Mtn 10 miles from ellijay towards Tennessee. Does anyone know if the fires are in that area

    1. I live on BBM and the fires are not here. I’m looking at the aerial map and it still appears to be a ways away but I’m still researching for the direction they’re moving and at what speed.

  12. We have reservations for a cabin in Gatlinburg, TN for New Years eve. We are traveling 10 hours from FL with 3 kids under 5 years old and planned to do mostly outdoors activities. Due to yesterday’s fire and evacuation, should we cancel for air and weather conditions? We really don’t want to waste our time and money to see ashes and not being able to enjoy the park and town. But I have no idea how far the effects of a wildfire can last. Thanks in advance.

    1. I’m not being flippant, you really need to contact the place where you have reservations to make sure it’s still standing. Personally, I would see if I could reschedule or change locations. While the hope is that today’s rains will put the fires out, the damage has already been done. It’s going to take a while, eventually we will rebuild and the mountains will recover.

  13. We are driving from Florida (via I-75) to Nashville TN (via I-24) on 12/1 – any issues with wildfires on these roads? What is air quality like in Nashville TN?

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