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.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Klamath Basin update - Tuesday afternoon

Source: South Central Oregon Fire Management Partnership

Lakeview -- Today, interagency fire crews are suppressing two holdover lightning fires in Lake County and four fires of unknown origins in Klamath County on lands managed by the Fremont-Winema National Forests and Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF).

“The hot, dry temperatures and gusty winds are allowing lightning fires from Sunday’s storm to quickly grow,” said Mike Haddock, Deputy Interagency Fire Staff for the Fremont-Winema National Forest and Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Lakeview District. “Interagency cooperation has been key to quick initial attack and keeping most of the fires reported to less than five acres.”

As of 3:30 p.m. today, 13 fires have been confirmed in Klamath County and 18 in Lake County since Sunday’s lightning storm. The four fires that were recently reported on private lands in the Klamath River Canyon and Ridgewater area near Klamath Falls, Ore., are under investigation. The largest lighting caused fire so far is the Barry Point Fire on the Fremont-Winema National Forest, which is estimated to be approximately 150 acres.

Fire danger throughout south central Oregon remains extreme. Fire officials ask the public to be sure of what public use restrictions are in place for the areas they plan to recreate on. For updated information, please call the South Central Oregon Fire Management Partnership (SCOFMP) fire information hotline at 541-947-6223.

For breaking news during the South Central Oregon’s fire season, please visit


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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.