Linville Gorge Nov. 20 (photo: Pam Lowry)
MORGANTON, N.C. (AP) - For Bruce Hallett it was rain, not fire, that worried him as he was getting ready for the start of this year's deer hunting season in western North Carolina.
Parts of the Linville Gorge had been closed for nearly two weeks because of a wildfire. No homes were destroyed and no one was hurt, but the fire destroyed nearly 2,600 acres.
A few days ago, the U.S. Forest Service said a combination of wet weather and efforts by firefighters had nearly contained the fire. So they allowed rifle deer hunting season to begin as planned Monday, with parts of the gorge opened for access.
That's good news for Hallett and other hunters who flock to the mountains.