Great Dismal Swamp

Smoke from Va. swamp fire reaches area

Smoke got in our eyes — and throats and lungs — Saturday, courtesy of a wildfire in a Virginia swamp more than 200 miles away.

Before afternoon rains cleared the air, fire departments in the Baltimore area reported numerous calls from residents who thought that where there is smoke, there must be fire. There was, but it was in the Great Dismal Swamp in southeastern Virginia, where a wildfire ignited by lighting Aug. 4 has consumed nearly 6,000 acres and continued to burn Saturday.

"We were out chasing smoke," said Capt. James Rostek of the Anne Arundel County Fire Department, which received almost 50 calls about the haze that wafted over the area from the swamp...