It's burning season for South Walton

Published: Thursday, January 24, 2013 at 04:48 PM.

"We do this so the plumes you see are not wildfire," said McGowan of fighting the risk of wildfire using prescribed fires. "We're really thorough ... We don't just light a match."

It doesn't take long for a fire to run out of fuel, leaving behind blackened bushes, palmettos, and tree trunks. But that is all fleeting, and the initial unsightliness is short-lived.

"You come back here in about three months, and this will be the prettiest part of the forest," said Goddin.

For more information about the benefits of prescribed burns, visit or

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