A wildfire has spread across more than 50 acres of Cumberland Island National Seashore off the Georgia coast, but officials don't expect it to grow much larger due to rising humidity levels.
The "Hickory Hill" fire, spotted January 4, has been described as a "slow moving, smoldering fire." As of Saturday morning 15 personnel were working on digging fire lines to slow its progress.
Due to the fire, parts of the seashore's officially designated wilderness have been closed to the public.
“Humidity levels continue to rise and along with higher temperatures forecasted for the next few days we don’t expect the fire to grow in strength or size,” acting Park Superintendent Dennis Parsons said Friday. “We will continue to monitor the fire and will adjust our crew response as needed.”
A managed public hunt on the seashore, scheduled to begin on Sunday, is expected to continue as planned. At check in hunters will receive a safety briefing and orientation to alert them to closed areas.
The current closure includes the following areas: east of Grand Avenue from the Stafford Plantation Road north to the Duck House Trail, Yankee Paradise Campground, Hickory Hill Campground and the connecting trails of Parallel, Yankee Paradise and Willow Pond. Additional closure of areas is not anticipated at this time and all closed areas are fully signed.
The cause of the fire is currently under investigation.