Pilot Mountain fire grows to 500 acres as cold front fans flames; weather ‘against’ responders battling fire

Piedmont Triad News

PILOT MOUNTAIN, N.C. (WGHP) — A fire continues to burn on Pilot Mountain.

The Mayor of Pilot Mountain, Evan Cockerham, posted on Facebook Sunday evening that the situation is being closely monitored and that the dry forecast for the next few days is contributing to the spread of the flames. Cockerharm requests anyone in Surry and surrounding counties refrain from any outdoor burning and that if anyone sees outdoor burning, to contact local law enforcement.

Cockerham initially asked for donations of supplies, but after an outpouring of support, he says the Pilot Mountain fire station does not need donations any longer but asks that food and water be donated to food banks.

An official with the NC Forst Service says that an estimated 500 acres have burnt as of 11 a.m. Monday. Pilot Mountain’s famous knob burnt overnight. More crews will be joining those already fighting the fire today from southern North Carolina counties, as well as crews coming in from east of Raleigh.

Planes will be in the air by 10 a.m.

The weather is “against” them as of right now, according to the NC Forest Service. The dry, windy conditions expected today are going to complicate containment, especially given the terrain.

FOX8 Meteorologist Emily Byrd said, “A cold front is moving through, and the breeze it’s producing is going to enhance the danger of wildfires today.”

The NC State Parks and Recreation Department says Pilot Mountain State Park is expected to be closed all week. The call reporting the fire came in around 5 p.m. on Saturday.

According to officials the fire started at the Grindstone Trail and is now all the way around the mountain and backing down to the base.

The Mayor concludes his message asking God to ‘bless our first responders, our town, and our beautiful mountain.’

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