Friday, September 12, 2014

BRFAL Hike at Douthat State Park

Thanks to our great chapter coordinator Ryan Klopf who is with the DCR and his co-worker, Adam Christie who is DCR-DNH Shenandoah Valley Region Steward, a number of our intrepid BRFAL chapter members (and one Roanoke chapter member) got treated to a guided hike to see and learn about the first ever controlled burn that was conducted this past Spring at Douthat State Park.

 Controlled burns may be conducted for a number of reasons, but if you want to find out more about this particular controlled burn, please follow this link:

 Our hike lasted a couple of hours and we lucked out and managed to stay dry even though the forecast called for rain storms to blow in.  I have included some pictures below.  The first picture shows an area that was burned and the next picture shows an adjacent area that was not burned.  The difference is rather dramatic. 

 Controlled burns are often conducted every 5-8 years.  Ryan and Adam explained the reasons to conduct controlled burns, the dangers associated with them and the safety precautions taken to ensure everyone comes back safely.  We should be very grateful to have the brave folks who perform this service.

 Everyone enjoyed our hike very much and we all left a little smarter about controlled burns.  That didn’t stop a number of us from stopping in Clifton Forge for some solid and liquid imbibement. 
                                                          Controlled Burn Area
                                                             No Controlled Burn

                                                                    Intrepid Hikers
For additional information about the Mountain Region Natural Area Preserves contact: Ryan Klopf, Mountain Region Steward, Department of Conservation & Recreation Division of Natural Heritage Roanoke, VA (540) 265-5234 

Or to learn more about Douthat State Park click here.

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