What started as somewhat of a small fire this Saturday is still smoking three days later. It's burned a total of 145 acres. The cause of the fire is still under investigation, but firefighters say it did not start naturally. Rising smoke was first reported on opening day of rifle season, which is not uncommon.
"Just because there are more people in the woods, and it is our fire season, becoming the tail end of it, so it's something we were prepared for," says Aaron Cook, a Forester with the Maryland DNR Forestry Service.
Firefighters had to clear debris leftover from Hurricane Sandy on the paved road near the fire before they could even access the flames.
"We could not even see or smell the smoke when we started," says Cook. "You can see the fire is up to us now, so we had to walk probably a half-mile in to find where it was actively burning and get the equipment in there to get started to put a line around it."
Cook says they didn't use a drop of water to put the water out, but bulldozed a fire line, and removed leaves so the fire could put itself out.
"It probably did a lot of good for the forest health overall. Our forests are kind of designed to have a fire every now and then go through them and clean things up. I'm sure that in a few years wildlife will benefit tremendously from some of the things that regenerate in here," says Cook.
Firefighters say they had a sound plan to fight the flames, just like the forest has for wildlife.