PICKENS, SC (23 November 2016 12:30 p.m.) – Preparations are currently underway for a new burnout operation to attack the Pinnacle Mountain Fire’s northern perimeter. Overnight, the fire edged closer to the North Carolina state line and is now encompassing 7,282 acres with 37% containment.
As a result of burnout operations and firefighting efforts, Table Rock State Park remains closed as is its Trail System. Additionally, trail closures from Ceasar’s Head to Sassafras have begun. The Table Rock Visitor Center off Highway 11 remains open to provide updates about the park and status of the fire.
The success of the previous burnout operation conducted on Friday, November 18th allowed crews to remove fuels ahead of the fire and protect 280 homes previously in its path. Fire crews will utilize the same techniques in hopes of achieving similar results.
At this time, no evacuations are necessary; however, if conditions change residents will be notified by fire services personnel.
South Carolina Forestry Commission is coordinating with North Carolina Forest Service and Transylvania County Emergency Services to keep residents informed of fire activity.
Trails and roads closed:
• Foothills Trail
• Dismal Trail
• Gum Gap Trail
Table Rock State Park is expected to re-open in stages once State Park and Forestry Commission officials deem conditions safe for the public.
The Table Rock Trail System will remain closed until a damage assessment can be made, hazards cleared and repairs made.
Sheriff David Mahoney said the Pinnacle Mountain Fire is just a couple hundred yards from Transylvania County. This is near the East Fork community. A couple deputies are assisting with traffic control.