Current situation

Winter and spring see lots of controlled burns in Oregon to eliminate piles of woody debris left over after logging or thinning. Embers buried in the ashes of these pile burns can sometimes reignite even days after a fire appears to be out, especially if winds blow away ashy debris. The same winds can then fan smoldering embers back to life. That's why it's a good idea to keep checking old pile burns to ensure no hot spots have rekindled.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Picnic Creek Fire News - ODF and Mt Vernon Rural

Fire News – August 26, 2010 at 8:00 p.m. PDT

Contact: Angie Johnson, Oregon Department of Forestry, (541) 620-4360

Picnic Creek Fire – Final News Release
Date Started: 8/26/2010 at 5:21 p.m. PDT
Cause of Ignition: Human (State Fire Marshall’s office is investigating cause)
Location: 8 miles west of Mt. Vernon, south of Hwy 26
Approximate Size: 20-30 acres
Percent Contained: 0%; containment expected late this evening.

Resources include:  5 engines from Oregon Department of Forestry, 1 engine from US Forest Service, and all of Mt. Vernon Rural Protection District; 1 Tender from Oregon Department of Forestry; 2 Dozers; 1 Helicopter (ODF) secured by Mt. Vernon Rural; Grant County Sheriff’s Office, Oregon State Police, State Fire Marshall’s Office, and Oregon Department of Transportation also contributed to the effort.

Protection Agency Responsible: Mt. Vernon Rural Protection District.

Additional information: Oregon Department of Forestry and US Forest Service assisted Mt. Vernon Rural Protection District with a fire in their district located in the Picnic Creek drainage, 8 miles west of Mt. Vernon. High winds pushed the fire near the vicinity of 20 structures; one confirmed outbuilding, possibly two outbuildings were destroyed. The use of engines, dozers, and a helicopter has prevented any significant fire spread at this time. Winds have died down considerably, giving crews the upper hand. Crews hope to have the fire lined later this evening. The fire is under investigation by Oregon State Fire Marshall’s office.

Weather:  With nightfall, the temperature has dropped nearly 30 degrees on the fire line. Currently it is 66 degrees. Winds have died down and relative humidity has increased.

Closures: At this time, there are no closures in place.



Jeri Chase
Oregon Department of Forestry
PH: 503-945-7201
Fire Duty Officer Pager #: 503-370-0403

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The purpose of this blog is to provide breaking news about wildfire activity on the forestlands protected by the Oregon Department of Forestry. We invite you to post questions or comments you have about current wildfires. Please keep your posts civil and free of profanity. You are also welcome to contact us by email at:

Current wildfire info

Cool, wet weather in the winter of 2016-17 ended Oregon's long drought and left a thick mountain snowpack. It didn't take long for that to melt and vegetation to dry out due to a series of heatwaves and a prolonged stretch of dry weather over the summer. As forest fuels dried, fires started and spread, many from lands adjacent to those protected by ODF, such as the Chetco Bar Fire in Curry County. That one fire accounted for 46% of the 47,537 acres of land protected by ODF which burned in 2017. Of fires originating on ODF-protected land, 95% were put out at less than 10 acres.

What we do

Protection jurisdiction

The Oregon Dept. of Forestry protects 16 million acres of private and public forestlands from wildfire. This includes all private forestlands in Oregon as well as state and local government-owned forests, along with 2.8 million acres of federal Bureau of Land Management lands in the western part of the state. In total there are about 30.4 million acres of forest in Oregon.

Fire suppression policy

The department fights fire aggressively, seeking to put out most fires at 10 acres or smaller. This approach minimizes damage to the timber resource and fish and wildlife habitat, and protects lives and property. It also saves money. While suppressing large fires can cost millions of dollars, economic and environmental damage from wildfires can be many times greater.


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Oregon Dept. of Forestry's public information officers in Salem, Ore., maintain this blog. During the wildfire season, we spend much of our time reporting on fires and firefighting to news media and the public.