October 21, 2019
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Illegal fire damages tent site at Acadia campground, forces partial evacuation

Courtesy of Acadia National Park
Courtesy of Acadia National Park
The ground next to a campsite at Acadia's Schoodic Woods Campground smolders Tuesday after firefighters extinguished an illegal campfire that spread and burned roughly 750 square feet of woods. Park rangers temporarily evacuated two adjacent campsites and are working to determine who set the fire.

Rangers at Acadia National Park are trying to determine who started an illegal campfire that damaged a campsite Tuesday at a campground on the Schoodic peninsula.

The fire occurred Tuesday evening at a walk-in site at Schoodic Woods Campground, burning about 750 square feet of woods, according to park spokeswoman Christie Anastasia. Fires are not allowed at the walk-in sites, she said.

She said rangers are trying to determine if a registered camper, or perhaps someone using the site without permission, may have set the fire. She said it appears to have spread after whoever was using it failed to fully extinguish the flames before leaving the campground.

Two adjacent walk-in campsites were evacuated as park responders and firefighters from several surrounding towns worked to douse the flames, according to Anastasia. The fire was reported late Tuesday afternoon and was extinguished around 8:15 p.m.

Other campers were allowed to remain at their sites, though rangers did restrict access to the walk-in sites and to where firefighters staged equipment for transporting water and tools down the wooded path.

Charges could be filed in the matter, she said.

The seasonal campground opened in 2015, after it and a network of nearby hiking and biking trails were built on a 1,440-acre wooded parcel that had been donated to the park. An anonymous donor who gave the land to Acadia paid the $17 million tab for building the campground and trails.

In June, a fire set at an illegal campsite near the base of Cadillac Mountain burned a fifth of an acre. At the time, Acadia officials said it was one of three illegal campsites — all with set camp fires — that rangers had discovered within the prior two weeks.

Watch: Schoodic Head in Winter Harbor



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